Pre-College Summer Program for High School Students


Pre-College Summer Program in Architecture


The Pre-College Art & Design Experience (PCADE) at the Academy of Art University is a tuition-FREE art and design education program for high school students. Removing tuition as a barrier is in alignment with the university’s mission to be inclusive in offering art and design education to everyone.

The Architecture pre-college program offers two options of learning modalities.  Students can learn in person on our San Francisco campus or online via Zoom.

The program is a great way to get hands-on experience in a fun and low-stakes environment. Curious to learn about what architects do? Interested in finding out whether you’d like to pursue it as a college degree? Find out!

For students who have already made the decision to apply to college as an architecture major, our program can help you build your portfolio.

This program is not for college credit.



Dates: 6/17/2024 through 6/27/2024 (Class meets Mon-Thu for 2 weeks)

Location for In-Person Section: 601 Brannan St., San Francisco (0.2 mile from Muni / 0.3 mile from CalTrain King Street Station / 1 mile from BART Powell St Station)

Location for Zoom Section: Zoom links will be announced

Eligibility: 9th grade through 12th grade High School students



Apply at this link

Register first and then select courses.

More information at


Course Descriptions

AE ARH 10 Architecture and the City & AE ARH 40 Architecture Making Lab are offered onsite and should be taken together. This is to take full advantage of the lab resources we have available on our campus.

AE ARH 10 Architecture and the City (onsite): Architects ask big questions: as online shopping grows, brick-and-mortar stores close. How can we repurpose the empty buildings? Dream big and explore ideas for the structure Macy’s is vacating. Collaborate and fabricate hands-on creations in our Makerspace. Through field trips, experience San Francisco through the eyes of an architect.

AE ARH 40 Architecture Making Lab (onsite): Architects develop ideas by making. “What if?” questions are tested and refined in drawings and models using an iterative design process. Gain hands-on experience of this foundational design skill in our Maker Lab using woodworking and digital fabrication tools.

AE ARH 30 Art in Architecture (Zoom): Architectural design is an exercise in creating three-dimensional compositions for people to inhabit. Reinterpret a 2D painting as a 3D structure to imagine immersive spatial experiences. Unlock new discoveries for translating ideas. Create abstractions of the 2D painting to create architectural spaces.


Class Times

AE ARH 10 Onsite: Mon, Tue, Wed, Thu 10-12pm

AE ARH 40 Onsite: Mon, Tue, Wed, Thu 1-3pm

AE ARH 30 Zoom: Mon, Tue, Wed, Thu 5-7pm


Student Work from 2024

Please click on this link to see photos and videos of student work!

High School Summer Program: Architecture and Urban Design