The Art Academy of Cincinnati is a private college of art and design, accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design, in Cincinnati, Ohio. It was originally founded as the McMicken School of Design in 1869, and was a department of the University of Cincinnati, and later in 1887, became the Art Academy of Cincinnati, the museum school of the Cincinnati Art Museum. In 1998, the Art Academy of Cincinnati legally separated from the museum and became an independent college of art and design. It currently offers four undergraduate degrees: Bachelor of Fine Arts in Fine Arts, Bachelor of Fine Arts in Communication Arts, Bachelor of Fine Arts in Art History, and an Associate of Science in Graphic Design. It also offers a Master of Arts in Art Education, which is taught during summer semesters.
The Art Academy moved into its current facility at 1212 Jackson St. in the Over-the-Rhine neighborhood in August 2005. This move has been pivotal in the Over-the-Rhine revitalization and renovation as an arts district. The new facility provides 24-hour access for students with around the clock security. Students are guaranteed studio spaces in Junior and Senior years. The 12th and Jackson St. building also features an open air atrium, connecting two formerly separate buildings, enlarged classroom spaces, computer labs, a student commons area, lecture hall, and Learning Services Center. In 2008, the Art Academy facility received Leadership in Energy and Environment Design (LEED) Green Building certification by the United States Green Building Council (USGBC).
AAC housing is required for out-of-town Art Academy freshmen at the Academy Housing Facility at the nearby corner of 12th and Vine streets. Spaces are also available to local freshmen. Twelve suites for 28 students are available each with fully equipped kitchens and with washer/dryer. A Resident Advisor is also available and lives on the premises. In 2008, the Academy purchased the 36,000 square foot building next to the Academy at 1201 Walnut Street. This brick building with cement decks and large windows is the perfect complement to the main building with growth potential for additional classrooms and studios. The AAC metal shop is located on the first floor of the Walnut Building.