Quick Facts

          (click any bar to expand)

The Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design

The Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design (MIAD) is Wisconsin's only four-year, private college of visual art and design. MIAD is a member of the Association of Independent Colleges of Art and Design (AICAD), a consortium of 43 leading art schools in the United States and Canada.


The Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design (MIAD) was founded in 1974. It is the successor to the Layton School of Art, founded in 1920.


MIAD is Wisconsin's only college devoted exclusively to the education of artists and designers. It is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (HLC) and by the National Association of Schools of Art & Design (NASAD).

Degree Programs


  • Communication Design
  • Illustration
  • Industrial Design
  • Interior Architecture + Design
  • New Studio Practice: Fine Arts


  • Studio Minors
    • All Major Programs
    • Book Arts
    • Digital Media Production
    • Furniture Design
  • Liberal Studies Minors
    • Advertising
    • Art History
    • Business
    • Copywriting
    • Humanities
    • Psychology
    • Natural Sciences
    • Writing

Degree Requirements

Students must earn 124 credits to graduate, including 81 studio credits and 43 liberal studies credits. Liberal study areas and the number of credits required in each are: English & Writing, 12: Art History, 12; Humanities & Sciences, 19.


MIAD's faculty consists of more than 100 artists, designers, and scholars. Our student faculty ratio is 15 to 1.


740 Students (Includes full-time and part-time, degree-seeking students) 54% Female, 46% Male
600 Pre-College students
250 Outreach/Special Programs students

Applications Requirements

Application form, essay, transcripts, interview and portfolio review, no fee for applicants who apply online at miad.edu/applynow.



2016-17 academic year: $33,640
Per semester: $16,820
Per part-time credit (fewer than 12 credits per semester): $1,122

Fees for the 2016-17 academic year vary by student depending on course selection and year in college.

  • Full-time Foundations student fees are $1,290, which includes a Core Kit of supplies, and two Studio Mini-Kits of supplies.
  • Foundations students, sophomore and juniors receive an annual software subscription (includes Microsoft Office, Autodesk and Adobe Creative Cloud Suite) invoiced at $100 in the fall semester only.
  • Majors fees for full-time, upper-level students are $1,000.
  • The Student Activity Fee for all students is $280.

2016-17 Academic Year Costs
Exceptional student housing is available at Two50Two, MIAD’s residence hall completed in 2014.  Located directly across the street from MIAD’s main academic building, Two50Two offers apartment-style suites designed and built exclusively for MIAD students.

  • Double-occupancy room (with shared bath) cost for the 2016-17 academic year: $7,650 (includes all utilities)

MIAD requires all full-time students to live at Two50Two, unless the student meets one of the following criteria: has a permanent residence within 45 miles of campus; is at least 21 years of age; is married; is a custodial parent; is a junior or senior; or has special needs which cannot be met at Two50Two. Housing information is mailed to all admitted students in March.

2016-17 Academic Year Costs
While MIAD’s residence hall offers fully equipped kitchens, we do understand there are times when students would prefer to eat on-campus in the MIAD cafe. MIAD requires a minimum $500 meal plan ($250/semester) for all residential students (those living on-campus). Student may choose to add additional funds to their minimum meal plan, or purchase food independently to prepare in their apartment kitchen.

MIAD uses the College Board’s estimate for additional food costs residential students may incur for the duration of the academic year. The estimated cost for food is $1,000 per academic year, although this cost will vary based on individual eating preferences.

Financial Aid

98% of all MIAD students receive some form of Institutional, State or Federal financial assistance.

MIAD students use the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), and MIAD's federal school code - 014203 - to apply for financial aid.


MIAD awards numerous merit-based scholarships to incoming students who demonstrate artistic and academic achievement. Scholarships range from $11,000 to full tuition.


MIAD's campus is located in Milwaukee's Historic Third Ward, the city's official arts district, bordered by the Milwaukee River and Lake Michigan. The college offers one of the largest, safest, and most comprehensive art and design environments in the United States. Its campus occupies a mix of historic and modern buildings:

    • The Jane Bradley Pettit Building, 273 East Erie Street: In 1992, after a complete renovation, the college moved into this facility. Our main academic building offers students, faculty, and staff 245,000 square feet of space on five floors.
    • Two50Two MIAD Student Apartments, 252 East Menomonee Street: Offers students exceptional apartment-style living with upscale amenities, including LED TVs, modern furniture and upgraded appliances in every apartment, and on-site lounges and laundry. Two50Two is located directly across the street from MIAD.
    • Blick Art Materials, 242 East Menomonee Street: MIAD's extensive on-campus art and design supply store.

Special Programs

MIAD offers special study opportunities on and off campus. They include:

  • The US mobility program, allowing students to attend 33 other AICAD schools throughout the nation for one semester.
  • New York studio program
  • Exchange programs in France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Korea, Mexico, China, and Poland
  • Independent Study
  • Work Study
  • Internships


  • Laptop-compatible labs for both fine art and design majors
  • Fully equipped 3-D Lab, including wood, metal and plastic power and hand tools
  • Numerous photography labs
  • Individual fine art and design studios
  • Sculpture studio with foundry
  • Printmaking studio with equipment for intaglio, lithography, screen printing and digital processes
  • Library (SWITCH Program) providing students with access to over 1/2 million volumes, 2000 videos and extensive online resources
  • Academic Support Center (tutoring, counseling, ESL support)
  • Blick Art Materials (located on-campus)
  • MIAD Cafe
    • Galleries

    • Brooks Stevens Gallery of Industrial Design (Jane Bradley Pettit Building)
    • Frederick Layton Gallery (Jane Bradley Pettit Building)
    • MIAD Student Gallery (Jane Bradley Pettit Building)
    • Marquette University Affiliation

      The MIAD and Marquette University connection offers MIAD students access to an increased number of Humanities and Sciences classes, library, health care, intramural sports, and health club facilities.