Pratt in the Community
Saturday Art School
Established in 1897, the Saturday Art School provides art education to more than 300 children per year in art disciplines ranging from Art Foundations to Interactive Media. The program serves students aged 3 to 18. Students receive instruction in the art/design techniques using the materials and tools used by artists, architects, and designers. All classes are taught on Pratt's campus by college and graduate students enrolled in the Art & Design Education Department who are supervised by Pratt faculty. As such, the program serves as a teaching laboratory for Pratt students, enabling them to hone their pedagogical skills. The goals of Saturday Art School are to give children opportunities that they might not otherwise have to develop their potential as creative individuals and to provide a learning laboratory for Art & Design Education students.
Design Initiative for Community Empowerment (DICE)
Established in 2005, DICE is a two-year after school program that offers Brooklyn high school students a foundation in the various design disciplines, such as architecture, industrial, fashion, and graphic design. DICE operates from September to May in two semester-long sessions. Classes are held twice a week after school and are taught by professional art and design instructors. The program offers students an introduction to design, through studio work and instruction, tours of graduate-level and professional design studios, public exhibitions, and visits from accomplished designers. DICE seeks to foster critical thinking and literacy, as well as an understanding of design. Students leave the DICE program with a portfolio of work and the ability to write about and discuss design and employ design-related problem-solving techniques. The goal of DICE is to introduce Brooklyn youth to career and advanced educational opportunities in design and to prepare them to purse these opportunities through a design education program to which they would not otherwise have access.
Summer Design Program
Launched in 2002 in response to requests from local parents for a summer program similar to Saturday Art School, Pratt Institute's Summer Design Program introduces students, aged 10 to 14, to the world of design during the month of July. The program features three courses (based on the instructors' expertise). Courses offered have included theatrical production design, jewelry design, and graphic design. Reading, writing, public speaking, and critical thinking skills are integrated into all course work particularly in the student's final presentation where exhibition design, written materials, and promotion are required, thus reinforcing academic performance.
Liberty Partnership Program
Pratt's Liberty Partnership Program (LPP) provides instruction in English, mathematics, and selected design disciplines to 5th, 6th, 7th, and 8th grade students at risk of dropping out of school. The program aims to increase the number of students who complete secondary school. Pratt's Liberty Partnership Program takes place on Saturdays from September to May on the Pratt campus. To motivate school-age children to achieve academic excellence, licensed public school teachers work with professional designers and architects to incorporate reading and math skills into instruction in a variety of design disciplines such as architecture, industrial design, computer animation, computer graphics, and video production. In so doing, children not only gain the remedial help they need, but also have an opportunity to spend time on a college campus and make the connection between school work and potential careers.