Montserrat College of Art welcomed nearly 360 freshmen, transfer and returning students to an expanded campus which will allow for social distancing, safe classrooms and residence halls.
All faculty, staff and students returning to campus had negative COVID-19 tests and each was required to sign a CommunityPledge to follow health guidelines. In addition, everyone is required to go online each day they are on campus to report their health status through an app which then allows them to attend classes. Community members are required to wear masks and observe City of Beverly safety measures as well. Cleaning has been increased and the college is in touch with the city’s health department on a regular basis to ensure safety guidelines, even as they change, are being observed.
“Our first priority,” said Dr. Kurt T. Steinberg, president, “is to keep our community safe while allowing students to continue their path to graduation. We have also impressed upon our community the importance of observing health and safety guidelines, both on and off campus, since we live, work and study in the City of Beverly and wish to help keep our neighbors safe and healthy.”
Twenty percent of classes will be taken online this semester, with some students opting for more online and some opting for more in-person options. Every student had a meeting with an academic affairs staff member prior to their arrival on campus to ensure their course schedules fit their needs.
The college is participating in a state-wide college testing program, along with our sister colleges on the North Shore, including Endicott, Gordon, and others. The testing was arranged through a partnership between AICUM (Association of Independent Colleges and Universities of Massachusetts) and the Broad Institute thanks to the capital investment of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts made possible by Gov. Charlie Baker. Montserrat will continue testing as the semester progresses. The college is posting its testing dashboard here.
In total, the Montserrat student body consists of 47% Massachusetts residents, 28% from other New England states and with 25% of the students coming from states outside of New England. Those states include Arkansas, California, Delaware, Florida, Maryland, North Carolina, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Texas, Virginia and Washington. The year’s student population is 75% female and 25% male.
Montserrat’s housing is apartment-style with kitchens, so students will be living in small groups. The college does not have a common dining hall. Residence halls are located around the core academic building, the Hardie Building at 23 Essex St., and around the downtown. Montserrat has both owned and leased buildings, and additional residence halls have been rented this year to allow for more distanced spaces. Montserrat’s other academic classrooms are located at 301 Cabot and 248 Cabot Street locations and the college has also partnered with The Cabot to hold classes in the theatre this fall.
Montserrat offers the Bachelor of Fine Arts degree as well as continuing education programs open to the community. Due to the pandemic, in person classes are not being offered this fall, but some online classes may be available later this fall. Check the continuing education section of the website for announcements. Montserrat’s public galleries will also be launching several new shows this semester, which may be viewed in person, by appointment. The galleries and President Kurt T. Steinberg, Ed.D. are also conducting, and publishing on the college’s website, interviews with artists across the globe discussing their artistic practices.
Montserrat alumni are employed by some of the country’s biggest brands including Disney, Puma, Hasbro and more. Montserrat students are required to complete an internship so they graduate prepared to take their place in the growing creative economy. Many Montserrat graduates go on to attend prestigious graduate programs, including Boston Architectural College, Columbia University, Cranbroook Academy of Art, Royal College in London, School of Visual Arts, NYC; the University of the Arts, Philadelphia; Yale University and more.
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Creative North Shore is having ongoing discussion of Accessibility and Disability Awareness leading up to the International Day of Disabled Persons on December 3 and the hopeful introduction of a Disability Parade in 2021. If this is a topic you are interested, have thoughtful story ideas, or know of an organization to add to the list below please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org
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