The Saturday Program

Applying to The Saturday Program

Applications for the Spring 2021 semester are now available! 

Please submit your application by  Wednesday, December 30th, 2020. Extended to Thursday, January 21st, 2021! The deadlines are rolling but to secure your spot we recommend applying as soon as possible. Applications received after this date will be placed on a waitlist.

Apply for Spring 2021 here!

Note: Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, all Saturday Program classes will be online for the Spring 2021 Semester. For the duration of the COVID-19 distance learning structure, classes will run partially live in real-time and partially asynchronously. That is, on Saturdays classes will meet for 2–3 hours cumulatively, as opposed to our standard 7–8 hour day when in-person and on campus. Students will be meeting for those times on Saturdays based on a schedule that instructors establish with each class. However, students should expect to start at 10 AM each Saturday. Projects will be assigned to be worked on individually and/or in small groups via online platforms.  


Important Dates for Spring 2021

December 30th: Deadline to submit Spring 2021 applications.

January 16th: Portfolio review sessions for all new seniors applying to Senior Studio classes (formerly titled “Portfolio Preparation”). This is ONLY for seniors applying to these classes for the first time. New students applying to Senior Studio must attend a virtual interview this day and have artwork to present in the interview. Returning Senior Studio students do not need to attend a review.

January 23rd: All Saturday Program classes begin.

April 10th: Last day of class and end of the Spring Semester. Opening of Y.E.S. (Year End Show), the Saturday Program’s annual exhibition of student work. Y.E.S. kicks off with SatPro Live!, a public presentation of students giving poetry readings, multidisciplinary performances, sound & video, and visual experiments. NOTE: Due to COVID-19, both Y.E.S. and SatPro Live! will be presented in virtual spaces (online).


The Saturday Program (During COVID-19)

The Cooper Union's Saturday Program offers eight free studio art courses enrolling over 200 New York City Public High School students. All classes meet remotely for a few hours on Saturdays and one-hour of office hours with their instructor during the week for two semesters – October to December and January to April.

This schedule provides the intensive working time necessary to explore media, technique, and concept for both the beginner and the student with art experience.  

Subjects offered for grades 9 through 12 are: 

  • Architecture
  • Digital Media
  • Drawing
  • Graphic Design
  • Painting
  • Sculpture
  • Senior Studio: Visual Art (12th grade only)
  • Senior Studio: Design (12th grade only)

Students need no prior experience, just strong motivation. An online application must be submitted to be considered for the program. Those who have attended the Saturday Program or The Outreach Program at The Cooper Union in prior years will be offered a place in the program as space permits. Returning students must re-apply by the application deadline each year.

For high school seniors, our two-semester Senior Studios provide support to successfully compete for admissions to art and architecture colleges. This intensive studio course includes individual advisement and studio visits with professional artists. Applicants to Senior Studios must attend an informal work review on the first Saturday in October or mid-January if applying for Spring.

All classes take field trips to museums, galleries, and artists’ studios (during COVID-19, these visits will be virtual). Creative writing workshops are integrated into the visual arts curriculum of every class. Each year the program culminates in April with an Exhibition and Multidisciplinary Spoken Word Performance (to which you are cordially invited). 


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For more information please call the Saturday Program Office at (212) 353-4108 or email


  • Founded by inventor, industrialist and philanthropist Peter Cooper in 1859, The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art offers education in art, architecture and engineering, as well as courses in the humanities and social sciences.

  • “My feelings, my desires, my hopes, embrace humanity throughout the world,” Peter Cooper proclaimed in a speech in 1853. He looked forward to a time when, “knowledge shall cover the earth as waters cover the great deep.”

  • From its beginnings, Cooper Union was a unique institution, dedicated to founder Peter Cooper's proposition that education is the key not only to personal prosperity but to civic virtue and harmony.

  • Peter Cooper wanted his graduates to acquire the technical mastery and entrepreneurial skills, enrich their intellects and spark their creativity, and develop a sense of social justice that would translate into action.