Hussian School of Art
Established in 1946, it offers a four-year, full-time program. Hussian College, located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (School of Art http://www.hussianart.edu/) and Los Angeles, California, (Relativity School https://relativityschool.org/) offers a Bachelor in Fine Arts (BFA) degree for Art, with six concentrations: Digital Media, Graphic Design, Visual Communications, Film & Digital Content, Acting, and Commercial Dance.
The first class at Hussian School of Art commenced on July 1, 1946. John Hussian, a member of Philadelphia's art community and a renowned lecturer, was encouraged by what is now the Philadelphia Museum of Art to open a school for veterans returning from World War II. Thanks to opportunities provided by the passing of the GI Bill, John Hussian worked closely with the Pennsylvania Department of Education Vocational Training and the Veterans Administration to provide quality training in fine art.
In the 1960s, many local competitors transitioned to collegiate status, while feedback from the industry and enrollment numbers indicated a continued need for career training in the visual arts. With Mr. Hussian’s guidance as president, the curriculum shifted to concentrate on commercial art. Hussian became a charter member in PAPSA (Pennsylvania Association of Private School Administrators) in the early 1960s.
The school was incorporated on July 1, 1969 and received its initial national accreditation as a member of National Association of Trade and Technical Schools (NATTS) in 1972.
In 1973, Mr. Ronald Dove became president of the Hussian School of Art. Mr. Dove adopted the same curriculum model and education philosophy that John Hussian had established for the institution. In 1978, Hussian applied to the Pennsylvania Department of Education for consideration to award a 4-year AST degree. Formal approval to award the degree was granted in May 1979. In 1992, Hussian received its initial accreditation from ACCSCT, now ACCSC, and has remained in good standing from the time of initial accreditation.
As Mr. Dove entered retirement, he appointed Bruce Wartman as President in July 2010 with the intention to train his predecessor as he reduced his responsibilities. Unfortunately, Mr. Dove’s health began to suffer and he decided to sell the institution in 2011 to Education Equities, LLC. With the change of ownership, a formal board of directors was established and a Strategic Plan for the institution was created based on a needs assessment of the modern job market and professional art community. The planning process included introducing new institutional policies, introducing new digital media curriculum, hiring more faculty, and transitioning the institution to collegiate status.
In September of 2011, Hussian submitted an application to become a degree-granting institution with the Pennsylvania Department of Education. This decision was made based on feedback from industry advisors, alumni, and prospective students that the BFA degree was more desirable in the industry and more indicative of the program rigor of the 4-year AST program. In May 2012, Bruce Wartman stepped down from the position of President. Alan Garfield served as interim President for three months while the Board of Directors conducted a search. In August 2012, Melissa Morgan, who was acting as Dean of Academic Affairs, was appointed President.
In November of 2013, Hussian was granted the ability to begin conferring a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) degree by the Pennsylvania Department of Education and immediately began the approval process with ACCSC. In January 2014, Hussian received approval to add the BFA to Hussian’s list of ACCSC approved programs. In January 2015 Hussian College received final approvals from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and ACCSC to change the institution name from “Hussian School of Art” to “Hussian College.”
Alumni of the Hussian School of Art include 1950s Marvel Comics artist Joe Maneely, and his classmate George Ward, an artist for periodicals including the Philadelphia Bulletin and the New York Daily News, and a 1950s assistant on Walt Kelly's comic strip Pogo.