Are you a high school student looking for a way to build a killer portfolio that will get you into a great art college–with a scholarship? The High School to Art School program (HS2AS) is a free visual arts portfolio development program that provides qualified high school sophomores, juniors and seniors with the art skills training, mentorship, essay writing techniques, college application assistance and financial aid planning necessary to gain acceptance into competitive art colleges.

High School to Art School sessions are scheduled in the Spring, Summer, and Fall of every year. Classes take place at Renew Queens, 47-20 11th St, Long Island City, NY 11101.



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*Should an applicant be invited for an interview, this Interview is mandatory for placement in the program.

ABOUT the program



the curriculum

Students receive lessons on foundation drawing, figure drawing with live models, two/three dimensional design, college-level color theory, art history, as well as concept development and critical inquiry through critique.

 HS2AS also integrates special classes to supplement its regular curriculum concentration on artistic techniques such as printmaking, fiber arts, collage-making, animation and puppetry. These sessions provide an introduction to skills that have the potential to diversify the student body's college studies and eventual career paths. [All sessions]


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Field Trips

HS2AS classes involve studies at local museums, galleries and noteworthy locales across New York City. They allow students to develop a robust understanding of diverse artistic practices. Past field trips have included trips to the Whitney Museum, The MET, DIA Foundation, MoMA, PS1, the Chelsea gallery district, the Brooklyn Museum, and more. [All sessions]





Student exhibitions are hosted at QCA for each semester's group of students as a culminating event at the end of their semester. [Spring & Summer sessions] 

Alumni exhibitions: Curated showings also present HS2AS program alumni work.

Each of these opportunities affords the participants to learn best practices for showcasing their work as professional artists.



art school info day

Art info day features representatives from prestigious art schools who engage students and their parents to explain all aspects of applying to and attending art college, including tuition, scholarships, FAFSA instruction and review student portfolios. Previously, representatives from Cooper Union, Boston University, Queens College, Parsons School of Design, CUNY, Alfred University, and Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) have attended. [Fall session]

career info day

Career info day provides students in-person interaction with working professionals in art related careers including animation, graphic design, ceramics, 3D printing and puppetry. [Summer session]

Meet our teaching artists!

application process

Apply Online

Students apply to the program through an online application called submittable, where you will be asked to provide:

  1. Basic Information about yourself (grade in school, family background, etc)

  2. Short Answer Questions: About your interest in the program and artmaking

  3. Work Samples: 3-10 images of artwork; at least three should be from observation, not imagination (Drawings from observation are works created by looking at objects/environments and not imagination. This can include, but is not limited to, landscapes, cityscapes, portraits, still lives, and/or objects. Sketchbook pages are also accepted!)

Next Steps

  1. Email Confirmation: One you’ve submitted your application, you will receive an email confirmation. *If you do not receive an email confirmation, your application did not go through, in which case please contact Program Manager Kelly Olshan at kolshan@queensocuncilarts.org to troubleshoot.*

  2. Interview Notification (via Email): QCA will notify you as to the status of your application prior to the session’s interview dates. Please check your email! If you are accepted for an interview but we do not hear back from you, you will forego your spot to another candidate.

  3. Interview: Should you be invited for an interview, interviews are mandatory for all prospective applicants. Students will meet with our teaching artists and program manager for a 15-minute portfolio review to discuss their interest in the program.

  4. Final Notification (via Email): Following your interview, you will receive a notification as to the final status of your application via email.



  1. What colleges have students been accepted to?

    Nearly 100% of HS2AS students receive acceptance at the colleges and universities of their choice! 
    The list of colleges that have accepted HS2AS students continues to grow.  It includes:
              Alfred University, American University, Boston University, Cal Arts, Carnegie Mellon, Cooper Union, Cornell University,
              Emily Carr, The Fashion Institute of Technology, George Washington University, Hunter College, Ithaca College, 
              Macaulay Honors CUNY, NYU Steinhart,  Pratt Institute, Parsons School of Design, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute,
              Rhode Island School of Design, Savannah College of Art and Design, The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, 
              The School of Visual Arts, and more.

  2. Do HS2AS students receive scholarships to college?

    Yes! In the past 3 years, students were awarded over $2 million dollars in scholarships. Of most recent graduating class, the class of 2017, 93% of students received financial aid totaling more than $1,000,000. Achievement of this kind is also anticipated for the class of 2018.

  3. Where are classes held?

    Classes are held at Renew Queens in Long Island City, located at Renew Queens, 47-20 11th St, Long Island City, NY 11101.

  4. Do I have to live in Queens to apply?

    No, we accept students from all over the greater New York City area. If you are able to commute to our classes in Long Island City, then you are eligible for the program!

  5. What do students learn in class?

    Students are taught the basics of 2 dimensional design, 3 dimensional design, color theory, art history, with a heavy emphasis on drawing.  Classes are supplemented by artist talks, workshops, museum and gallery trips.  There is a writing class for seniors in the fall and 2 exhibitions where students present and interpret their work for the audience.

  6. Who teaches HS2AS classes?

    Our instructors are dedicated educators and practicing artists living and working in New York. Read more about them here! With two instructors for every class, we keep a low teacher : student ratio to ensure each student receives individualized attention & support.

  7. How much does it cost to attend?

    High School to Art School is a free program! If accepted, all class materials are provided.

  8. Do I need prior art experience?

    Absolutely not. We understand students come to HS2AS with different experiences with art, although it’s nice to see good drawing skills, it’s not necessary.  We expect all potential students to be dedicated and passionate about art.  That’s the key!


Email High School to Art School Program Manager Kelly Olshan at kolshan@queenscouncilarts.org

follow @hs2as on instagram, or check out the program's flickr page.

The HS2AS Program is sponsored by the Altman Foundation, Milton and Sally Avery Arts Foundation, Inc., Con Edison, James Conlon Fund, NYC Department of Cultural Affairs, Pinkerton Foundation, Queens Borough President Melinda Katz and Sterling National Bank.