Tuition Rewards by SAGE Scholars

Our first significant digit is 1885—the year of our founding. Over the next century, Watkins evolved into an influential art institution with local impact and global reach. More specifically, we are a regionally and nationally accredited nonprofit independent college of the visual arts offering bachelor of fine arts (BFA) degrees in film, fine art, graphic design, illustration, interior design, and photography as well as a BA in art. Our graduate programs include two MFA degrees—in film and in visual arts. We also are a committed community partner, offering classes in a broad range of subjects for adults, teachers, and children of all ages through our Community Education programs.

Watkins College of Art challenges individuals to develop their talent, refine their creative practice, and dedicate their lives to advancing culture through the illuminating power of art.In seeking out questions and pursuing answers, both cultures and creative individuals reap rich rewards. And the answers they provide improve, elevate, and electrify our common cause. The artist’s enlightenment becomes our own.Watkins exists to serve this dynamic interplay—sparking the artistic and societal impulses to seek, to refine, to challenge, and to push our mutual work. Watkins exists to provide avenues for artists to reveal their insights to the world at large. This is the project of a boundless civilization. And it is the promise of a Watkins education.We welcome like-minded creative spirits to join us in fulfilling this vision.


Fall 2018 stats

  • 193 students
  • 62% Female, 38% male
  • 82% between ages 17 and 24
  • 18% over the age of 25
  • 20 states represented
  • 10:1 student-teacher ratio in studio classes
  • 19:1 student-teacher ratio in liberal arts classes


The 13-acre Watkins campus is located just north of downtown Nashville and includes:

  • 63,000 square-foot academic and art-making facilities
  • 10,000 square-foot Cecy Reed Student Center with cafe
  • Lakeside gardens and sitting areas
  • State-of-the-art “silo” studios for individual studios
  • Cutting-edge film soundstages
  • 48 student residents in Hawkins Residence Hall apartments
  • 48 student residents in Turner Residence Hall apartments
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