Mentor Program in the Arts

Santa Monica College’s Mentor Program in the Arts provides extremely gifted students in the fine and applied arts with one-on-one support training by professionals in their special fields. Designed for individuals whose talents exceed the scope of the traditional curriculum at the College, the Mentor Program is tailored to students whose continuing education or professional careers depend on juried performances or compiled portfolios of work.

Students in the program embark on a course of study in an intense learning environment with individual or small-group instruction in two areas: art and music. The program usually includes a public exhibition or performance. Upon completing the program, students are individually guided through the process of transferring to a university, art school, music conservatory, or other appropriate institution to continue their studies. In some cases, students are helped to launch their professional careers directly through placement in apprenticeship programs or employment with professionals in the field.

To participate, students must demonstrate exceptional ability and commitment. Each department has its own policies for admission, prerequisites, and corequisites in the program. The selection process is determined by a faculty committee and includes a portfolio review or an audition. This review usually takes place at the end of a semester for participation in the program the following semester. Students selected may participate for up to four semesters under the direct supervision and guidance of a designated Mentor.

Through the SMC Associates support group, scholarships, materials, and other resources are often made available to help these students. Students interested in participating in the Mentor Program should contact the chair of the department in which they would like to study as soon as possible. For other information, contact the appropriate Department Chair.

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