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Here’s how you can fast-track your career in the art and design industry

Emily Carr University of Art + Design offers new students a head start in their first year of studies through the Accelerated Summer Foundation
The deadline to apply for Emily Carr University's Accelerated Summer Foundation is March 1, 2024. Photo via ECU

Are you interested in pursuing higher education in art and design but wish you could cut down on the time it takes to complete a degree program in Vancouver? 

The new Accelerated Summer Foundation program at Emily Carr University of Art + Design (ECU) is designed for various student profiles. It caters to high school graduates ready to pursue their chosen field of study, transfer students who have completed their bachelor’s degree and aim to transition to the creative arts, and anyone embarking on their learning journey. This program offers an opportunity to complete an art and design undergraduate degree in under four years.

Offered by Canada’s top ranked university for art and design education, the Accelerated Summer Foundation will expedite your first year – known as the Foundation year at ECU – in just under four months. 

An accelerated timeline for first-year success

Running from May through mid-August, the 15-week intensive program consists of two consecutive seven week semesters over 15 weeks, with a pause for a break week in-between. Upon completion of the Accelerated Summer Foundation, students will have completed 21 credits towards their undergraduate degree program and will be ready to jump straight into the second year of their art and design degree once the fall semester arrives 

First-year undergraduates are afforded a comprehensive introduction to critical inquiry, interdisciplinary practices and creative explorations as they learn the essential skills, concepts and approaches to working in one of three streams of artistic study at ECU:

  • Visual Arts (Bachelor of Fine Arts)
  • Film and Screen Arts (Bachelor of Media Arts)
  • Arts Design (Bachelor of Communication Design, Industrial Design and Interaction Design)

Students of the Accelerated Summer Foundation will split their time between hands-on studio work, learning creative processes, studying art history and theory, and engaging with humanities and writing.

The Accelerated Summer Foundation program at Emily Carr University offers a fast track to earning an art and design undergraduate degree in less than four years. Photo via ECU

Get ahead in your art and design learning journey

Studying during the quieter months of the summer as part of a smaller cohort allows program participants a number of benefits. 

“It’s an intensely focused time that can yield high results for very highly motivated and productive students,” says ECU faculty member and Advanced Visual Arts Foundation program coordinator prOphecy sun. “It’s a very unique experience, too, because there’s more studio space, more opportunities to use the school and connect with other students in coinciding programs.”

Students will receive personalized support from instructors and be able to build connections before the school semester begins.

“Having that amount of one-on-one contact with my professors was so beneficial for a better, stronger overall idea of my art practice,” says ECU student Sophia Benson. “It was an experience I’ve never had in university before, where you’re able to be in-touch with your professors about everything. With every assignment each week they’re checking in and giving feedback. I felt like all of that was super helpful.”

Upon completion of the Accelerated Summer Foundation, first year students will have already been exposed to the multitude of art mediums covered at ECU, allowing them to move swiftly into their chosen field of study and look ahead to possible career applications in art, media and design. 

“If anything, it made me over-prepared,” shares ECU student Cassie Mifflin. “Going into second year is a lot calmer now.”

Hurry! The deadline to apply for ECU’s Accelerated Summer Foundation is March 1, 2024. Visit to get started.