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Community Arts Training (CAT) Institute

The Community Arts Training (CAT) Institute is an innovative program centered on the belief that art has the power to be an agent for positive social change. The CAT Institute, founded in 1997, is a five-month training that fosters successful partnerships between artists of all disciplines, social workers, educators, community and social activists, and policy-makers with the goal of creating relevant, impactful arts programs particularly in under-resourced community settings, e.g. neighborhood organizations, social service agencies, development initiatives, and after-school programs.

The Regional Arts Commission supports people who are working at the intersection of art and community through training, professional development, workshops and networking opportunities, and other programs. RAC’s commitment to community led to its founding the Community Arts Training (CAT) Institute, the longest-running sustained training program of its kind in the United States. Since its inception, the CAT Institute has trained over 400 artists of all disciplines, social workers, educators, community and social activists, and policy-makers. These CAT Institute alumni continue to create relevant, impactful arts programs that serve under-resourced communities in a variety of settings, including neighborhood organizations, social service agencies, churches, and schools, as well as development initiatives. CAT Institute alumni create a powerful network of creative leaders, innovators, and entrepreneurs, all focused on building a stronger, more vibrant St. Louis.

Are you working at the intersection of art and community?

Applications for the 2019-20 CAT Institute are now closed. Thank you to those who applied.

You can nominate a colleague for the CAT Institute. Nominations are encouraged because they are considered during the selection process. (They are not required, however.) Self-nominations are welcomed. Submit a nomination.

2019–2020 Schedule*

  • Thursday, November 14, 5:30-7:00 p.m.
  • Friday, November 15, 1-7 p.m.
  • Saturday, November 16, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
  • Friday, December 13, 1-7 p.m.
  • Saturday December 14, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
  • Friday, January 10, 1-7 p.m.
  • Saturday, January 11, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
  • Friday, February 7, 1-7 p.m.
  • Saturday, February 8, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
  • Friday, March 13, 1-7 p.m.
  • Saturday March 14, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.

*Additional meeting dates outside curriculum are scheduled with all Fellows’ input.