Missouri Fine Arts Academy June 7-27, 2015

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is the purpose of the Missouri Fine Arts Academy?

  1. For students to explore artistic techniques and gain knowledge in their primary discipline and the disciplines of the Academy.
  2. For students to learn processes for creating, revising, rehearsing and presenting work in their major discipline and interdisciplinary pieces.
  3. For students to participate in and contribute to the cultural community of the Academy.

2. When and where does the Academy operate?

The dates for the 2014 Academy are Sunday, June 8 - Saturday, June 28 on the campus of Missouri State University in Springfield, Missouri.

3. How are students selected?

Schools may nominate qualified sophomores and junior students for the Academy and students may self-nominate with the guidance of a teacher or school administrator.

Students must submit a comprehensive application that includes a portfolio or video performance in their primary discipline, an essay and a student evaluation form.

A selection committee composed of artists and arts educators evaluates all application materials before selecting qualified participants.

4. How does the Academy differ from regular high schools?

The Academy is a residential school that operates seven days a week, enrolls only artistically talented students, and provides a curriculum different from that found in a public or private school. It offers unique opportunities for students to enhance their artistic abilities and creative energies, to explore the various roles the arts play in society and to encounter the arts in an interdisciplinary forum.

5. What is the curriculum for the Academy?

The Academy's curriculum is designed to give participants an opportunity to pursue studies that differ from traditional approaches to arts education. Students pursue three areas of study:

  1. Interdisciplinary Class: Every Academy student is enrolled in this class that meets each morning to study arts in an interdisciplinary format. 
  2. Discipline Specific Class: This class meets early each afternoon to pursue techniques and knowledge in the student's primary discipline.
  3. Electives and Artist Workshops: These meet late afternoons and several evenings. Students may choose any elective or workshop for which they have the necessary skills and knowledge to participate.

6. What is the extracurricular and recreational program?

A full schedule of diverse activities is offered on evenings and non-academic days (Thursdays and Sundays) to enhance the Academy curriculum. In past Academies, the students have attended concerts, Missouri State's Tent Theatre and other performances. There are also opportunities for students to participate in performances, presentations and special events which they play a role in creating.

Jogging, basketball and other recreational activities are organized based on student and staff interest and availability.

7. Who teaches at the Academy?

Faculty and staff for the Academy are artists and educators representing K-12 schools, colleges and universities, and public/ private art enterprises. They are chosen based on students' needs/ interests and on their willingness to participate with students in rigorous and challenging work.

8. What grades and credit are given?

All students who successfully complete MFAA will receive three hours college credit (IDS 101-Interdisciplinary Seminar) from Missouri State University at no additional cost. MFAA alumni who complete IDS 101 and who subsequently enroll as full time students at Missouri State University will receive scholarships of three hours credit during their first semester of full-time enrollment.

9. What is the cost to students and are scholarships available?

Cost per student at MFAA is $1,400. Students are encouraged to explore various sources of funding for fees, including schools and districts, booster clubs, nominees' families, service and social organizations, arts organizations, and other public and private donors.

Nominees qualifying under federal government eligibility guidelines for free or reduced price school meals, even if they have not applied for free or reduced price school meals at their sending schools, may apply for MFAA scholarships. Certification of eligibility will be required when nominees are selected.

10. What can students expect from residence hall life?

Students live in Wells House, located relatively near all facilities utilized by MFAA. Participants are assigned by gender to separate halls. Each Academy student shares a room with another participant from another school and discipline to encourage a sense of community within the Academy. Academy officials make room assignments. Each Resident Assistant works closely with approximately 15-20 students to supervise the residence life experience. In addition, university residence life and security personnel ensure a safe environment for participants.

11. Are participants allowed leaves of absence or visitors?

The MFAA program is concentrated and progressive. Departures from and visitors to the Academy compromise the academic and artistic experience and disrupt the culture and community of the Academy. Absences are only allowed in extenuating or special circumstances at the discretion of the MFAA director.

12. Are participants allowed to bring vehicles?

No, automobiles, bicycles, motorcycles and other kinds of vehicles are prohibited.

13. What entertainment and cultural activities are provided?

Academy participants are able to take advantage of a full range of cultural activities, including concerts, exhibits, and theatre productions. Daily, all students receive a full explanation of the calendar of events, including those for which they must sign up in advance.

14. What health services are available?

The Academy contracts for the part-time services of a Licensed Practical Nurse, when appropriate and available, to handle routine medical issues free of charge to Academy students. University health services also are available to Academy students, if needed. Taylor Health and Wellness Center, located on the Missouri State University campus, bills the students' families for such services. All charges from physicians, hospitals, or pharmacies are the families' responsibility. Contact information for University health providers is detailed in family information. If a student has special health or dietary needs and/or medication requirements, Academy officials must be notified prior to the start of the Academy. Students are responsible for self-administering medication.

15. Do students have an opportunity to participate in religious services?

Arrangements for optional attendance at religious services at several churches located in town are made during registration.

16. Do students have unscheduled time?

Unscheduled time typically occurs on evenings before or after scheduled activities, and on non-academic days when students are not involved in elective or required activities.

17. What personal items should students bring?

  • Clothing should be appropriate casual dress for daily classes; dress attire for performances and convocations; a jacket, sweatshirt or sweater; athletic shoes; rain gear or umbrella; bathrobe; flip flops or slippers; and personal care items.
  • Other useful items may include a laundry bag, detergent, postage stamps, radio, alarm clock, clothes hangers, hair dryer, extension cord, personal sports equipment, camera, games, etc. Televisions are not allowed.
  • The use of cell phones during the Academy is firmly restricted to specific times and places. Phones are not permitted in assemblies, classes, meetings, rehearsals, evening events or any other situation where their use could be disruptive. Specific expectations regarding cell phone use will be provided in the Student Handbook and in house meetings.
  • Bed linens, blanket and pillow are furnished for every bed. The residence hall is air-conditioned; students are advised to bring an extra blanket. Students are to bring their own towels and washcloths.
  • Basic classroom needs such as pencils, paper, notebooks, etc., are the student's responsibility. If needed, these items may be purchased at the campus book store.

Because of the sense of community established at the Missouri Fine Arts Academy, theft and disappearance of personal items has not traditionally been a problem. Although the Missouri Fine Arts Academy staff takes reasonable precautions to protect students' personal items, when feasible, the Academy does not take responsibility for personal items, including musical instruments. Academy classes, events, and business take place in public spaces that cannot be totally secured. It is recommended that students lock personal items in their dorm rooms when they're not being used and that families be certain that their personal property insurance cover items of value.

18. What is appropriate dress for the Academy?

The Missouri Fine Arts Academy maintains a quality learning environment for students. Student appearance is an important aspect of the environment. Students are expected to dress tastefully and may wear jeans, slacks, shorts, dresses, and skirts and blouses while attending classes. Students wearing inappropriate clothing will be asked to change. Both the opening and closing convocations are dressy, as are several evening events.

19. What behaviors will result in immediate expulsion?

  • Possession or use of illegal drugs, alcoholic beverages, and tobacco products
  • Possession or use of firearms, other weapons, or fireworks
  • Destruction of property
  • Physical harm or abuse or threat of physical harm or abuse to oneself or others
  • Violation of any state or federal law
  • Violation of Academy or Missouri State University rules and regulations
  • Refusal to comply with directions from Academy officials
  • Activities that might place students at risk of physical harm

For a complete list of student rights and responsibilities, visit Missouri State's Policy Library, Chapter Five: Student Policies.

20. What is a typical daily schedule?

7:00-8:15 a.m. Breakfast
8:30-9:30 a.m. Self-directed time
9:45-11:45 a.m. Interdisciplinary class
11:45 a.m.-12:45 p.m. Lunch
1:00-1:30 p.m. Academy Assembly
1:45-5:00 p.m. Discipline-Specific class
5:15-6:30 p.m. Dinner
7:00-10:00 p.m. Evening activities: workshops, presentations, performances (times vary)
10:00 p.m. Curfew and house meeting
11:00 p.m. Lights out

21. What is the schedule for the first day of the Academy?

Sunday, June 8, 2014
9:00-11:30 a.m. Students arrive to register and move into the residence hall
NOON-1 p.m.
Lunch (not provided by MFAA)
1:30-2:30 p.m. Opening Convocation
3:00-5:30 p.m. Campus tour, Class photo, Orientation
6:00-7:00 p.m. Barbecue dinner
7:15-9:30 p.m. Safety presentation and social event
9:45 p.m. Curfew and house meeting
11:00 p.m. Lights out

A detailed schedule of opening day activities and suggested arrival times will be provided to participants in early June.

22. What is the schedule for the last day?

Saturday, June 28, 2014
7:00-8:15 a.m. Breakfast (last meal on campus)
7:00-10:30 a.m. Parents arrive to check students out of residence hall
10:45 a.m. All students checked out of residence hall
11:00 a.m. Closing Convocation

23.  What is your non-discrimination policy?

Missouri State University is a community of people with respect for diversity. The university emphasizes the dignity and equality common to all persons and adheres to a strict nondiscrimination policy regarding the treatment of individual faculty, staff and students. In addition, in accord with federal law and applicable Missouri statutes, the university does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, ancestry, age, disability, or veteran status in employment or any program or activity offered or sponsored by the university. In addition, the University does not discriminate on any basis (including, but not limited to, political affiliation and sexual orientation) not related to the applicable educational requirements for students or the applicable job requirements for employees.

This policy shall not be interpreted in a manner as to violate the legal rights of religious organizations or military organizations associated with the Armed Forces of the United States of America.

The university maintains a grievance procedure incorporating due process available to any person who believes he or she has been discriminated against. Missouri State University is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action/Minority/Female/Disabliity employer. Inquiries concerning the grievance procedure, Affirmative Action program, or compliance with federal and state laws and guidelines should be addressed to:

Equal Opportunity Officer
Office of Human Resources
128 Carrington Hall
901 S. National
Springfield, MO 65897
417-836-4252