Community Arts Training (CAT) Institute


The intersection of Art & Community

Calling all CAT Alumni! We’re creating an Alumni Advisory Committee and want you to be on it! Learn about this opportunity (PDF).


Applications for the 2019-2020 Community Artist Training (CAT) Institute will open July 1.

You can also 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 here.

2019–2020 Schedule*

  • Thursday November 14, 5:30-7 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.

The CAT Institute is a rigorous program that demands a lot from its Fellows. Through a competitive application process, we aim to identify dedicated participants that seek to learn about the use of the arts in community settings, to develop their collaboration skills, and to explore new concepts and ways of working. Successful CAT Institute Fellows are eager to collaborate with their fellow participants and faculty; approach the experience with an open mind; and are committed to collaboration, communication, community, and creativity.

The CAT Institute is fully underwritten by RAC as an investment in the future of community arts. Acceptance to the program is contingent on the fellow’s ability to attend 100% of the class sessions. We’re evaluating the possibility of offering childcare services for this session and will ask applicants to indicate their interest in their application. For those whose schedules conflict with one or more sessions, we invite them to consider applying to a future session.

For more information about the CAT Institute, please continue reading. Questions? Contact us.

Introduction to the Community Arts Training (CAT) Institute

Community Arts Training (CAT) Institute classThe 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.

Community Arts Training (CAT) Institute dance classThe Community Arts Training (CAT) Institute was founded in 1997 on the belief that art has the power to be an agent for positive social change and that cross-sector collaboration is the key to enhancing that power. Since its inception, the CAT Institute has trained over 300 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.

Continue reading more about the Community Arts Training (CAT) Institute.

Consider nominating a colleague or friend:

Got someone in mind for the CAT Institute? Submit a nomination here It is not required to be nominated to submit an application, but we encourage them when possible because they are considered during our selection process. Self-nominations are welcomed.