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International Gateway Program

For inquiries, or to apply, contact Hilary Darling at gateway@calarts.edu.

The International Gateway Program is a specially designed course of study for new CalArts students from around the world. Arriving before the start of the fall semester, participating students focus on English language acquisition and adapt early to life in their new environment. In addition to formal classroom instruction, the program features a range of activities and trips designed to help international students get to know the CalArts campus and its surrounding community. Most importantly, students in the program join in a supportive community as they meet with both CalArts faculty and international classmates, making it easier to adjust to the fast pace of the CalArts educational experience once school begins.

The Learning Experience

Language Instruction

Language classes are held Monday – Friday mornings for two weeks and taught by a certified esl/ell instructor. Students are introduced to the fundamentals of the English language and engage in various modes of usage that will prepare them for optimal performance in an English-speaking environment. In addition, the class prepares students to participate in afternoon Arts & Culture classes by introducing key terminology and concepts relevant to each day’s topic.

Arts and Culture Study

Complimenting the morning language classes, the program features afternoon Arts and Culture units led by CalArts faculty members. Each two-day unit has a different topic that focuses on a particular exhibition or event. Each unit begins on the CalArts campus with research and discussion to contextualize the topic in question and introduce students to the vocabulary and issues that are relevant to artists in the field. The following day, students are led on a field trip to view and experience the exhibition or event. Topics vary and represent different schools within the Institute. This portion of the curriculum prepares students to actively engage in the activities and discourse of the CalArts community.

Community Building

On evenings and weekends students have the opportunity to relax and socialize with their peers and various members of the CalArts community. Activities include, but are not limited to, poolside barbecues, outdoor movies, group projects, and language labs. Perhaps most importantly, students go on group excursions to become familiar with the local community of Valencia. Students learn how to navigate their way through the Santa Clarita Valley, use all available means of transportation, and find local malls, movie theaters, and stores for food and clothing.

Pre-Orientation Activities with the Institute International Advisor

During International Gateway students participate in preorientation activities with the Institute International Advisor. The Advisor welcomes students and familiarizes them with their rights and responsibilities as International students at CalArts. During this time students take care of their initial administrative duties, thus freeing themselves up to focus on the events within their métier during the traditional Orientation week.

The Living Experience


On-campus housing is available for both BFA & MFA International Gateway students who will be living in a CalArts residence hall during the fall semester. Students move into the room that has been assigned to them for the regular academic year, allowing them to settle into their new home on campus and get to know their Resident Assistant (RA). Students who will not be living on campus will need to provide their own transportation to and from campus to participate in Gateway.

Meal Plan

The International Gateway meal plan is included for on-campus students; it is optional, though highly recommended, for off campus students. The meal plan covers lunch and dinner, Monday through Friday only. Because one of the key objectives of this program is to help students become self-sufficient in their new homes, they are encouraged to stock their kitchens and prepare a few meals for themselves. Program staff will provide transportation assistance and guidance as students learn to shop for food and other supplies in the local area.

Program Dates: August 16-31


  • Fee for instruction and activities: $1,500
    (does not include room and board)
  • Fee for room and board: $825
    (includes transportation from lax Airport, on-campus housing, and lunch and dinner Monday-Friday for both weeks)
  • Fee for meal plan only: $350
    (includes lunch and dinner Monday-Friday for both weeks)


  • Deadline to enroll: June 2, 2014
  • Deadline to pay: June 5 by 4 pm PST

Payment Options

Pay Online:
CalArts partners with Tuition Management System (TMS) to enable online payments. You may pay in full online by electronic check or credit card at https://calarts.afford.com. Select Make a Payment and follow the steps on each page.

Pay by Phone:

Call the Accounting Office at (661) 253-7852 to pay your balance due in full with Visa, Mastercard, Discover or American Express.

Pay by Wire Transfer:

If paying by wire transfer, be sure to check with your bank the cost of the wire. The bank usually deducts the cost of the wire from the amount of money that you send, which in some instances may cause your payment to be short. Please use the following information:

Bank of America – Woodland Hills Branch
5945 Canoga Avenue
Woodland Hills, CA 91367

Make payable to:
California Institute of the Arts
Account # 1465-0-01460
Routing # 026-009-593
Swift Code – BOFAUS3N
Please include the student’s name and ID number.

International Payments

If you are sending a payment from a non US bank account, CalArts has partnered up with Western Union (a.k.a. Travelex Global Business Payments) to expedite your payment and save all parties on wire fees. Please click link Western Union Info Sheet for detailed information. To begin the payment process click link CalArts/WesternUnion international student payment portal and follow the steps to receive a statement with your rate quote which you will print out and take to your bank and instruct them to initiate the wire as soon as possible.

If you have any questions about the balance on your student account, please contact:

Andrea McGuff


Hilary Darling
Critical Studies Faculty & Director of Summer Session

Last edited by rsdavid on Apr 30, 2014
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