“The Arts Institute was my passion in high school and shaped me into the person I am. I am forever grateful and confident I will give back in the future to support other young, creative minds.” -Blaze Bautista, Former Student and Scholarship Recipient 2018

“We must include the arts in the education of all students if we want our children prepared for the challenges of life and work in our global society. The challenges of today, and most certainly of tomorrow, require the abilities, skills, habits, and knowledge that education in the arts is uniquely able to provide.” -Kent Seidel, Executive Director, Alliance for Curriculum Reform, University of Cincinnati

“We live in a creativity economy where people with creative skills are more valued than ever before.” -Nik Hafermaas, Art Center College of Design

“The reality of life in the 21st century is that the skills associated with artistic practices – creative thinking, self-discipline, collaboration, and innovation – are skills that are in great demand. In fact, in our rapidly changing global economy, the skills the arts teach may be mandatory for everyone’s success.” -Robert Lynch, President and CEO, Americans for the Arts

friends of The Arts Institute
at Palm Springs High School
P.O. Box 813
Palm Springs, CA 92263


The Arts Institute at Palm Springs High School is a model arts education program offering interested high school students enhanced learning experiences for artistic growth and preparing them for educational and job opportunities in the arts beyond high school. Palm Springs High School was the first school in California to offer a program of this nature. When the Arts Institute started in 2005, there were less than 25 students enrolled. Today, there are over 300 students participating, and the number continues to grow each year. Students enrolled in the Arts Institute take the same core classes, including honors and advance placement classes, and master the same California State Standards required of all Palm Springs High School students. The significant difference is that Arts Institute classes are taught through the lens of the arts utilizing a “cross-arts” approach. Arts Institute students benefit creatively and educationally from “arts rich” assignments, experiencing guest speakers in the arts, and attending out-of-school arts related opportunities. The program teaches students to be creative problem solvers and inspires them to excel in a creative field of their choice. Each class offered within the Arts Institute is fully accredited and accepted for college admission. Additionally, during their senior year, Arts Institute students have the opportunity to work with an arts professional as their personal mentor to acquire employable skills.


Arts education is a vital component in preparing America’s children for the future. It has been proven that an arts education helps students increase cognitive development, improves visual analysis skills, inspires motivation and discipline, develops confidence and inventiveness, and enhances communication and problem-solving skills. Students are able to be creative, which allows for better critical thinking skills. Studies have shown that children who receive an arts education achieve higher overall grade point averages, have a higher graduation rate, and achieve higher test scores. The arts industry generates billions of dollars annually in economic activity, supports millions of jobs, attracts tourism dollars, stimulates local economies, and improves the quality of civic life throughout the country. An arts education is vital to ensure that students acquire the necessary skills to succeed in today’s global economy.


One of the most important facets of the Arts Institute is its mentoring program, in which students intern with professionals and companies in all areas of the arts to assist in their “real-world” education. The internships allow students to shadow a professional and learn valuable skills needed for their chosen industry. Working alongside an industry professional helps the student develop and refine skills and provides a great opportunity to gain experience. At the end of the internship, each student is required to create a presentation outlining what they learned. The benefits gained through this experience are shown through the students’ well thought out and creative presentations. Students agree that the mentoring opportunity is a valuable experience that creates a lasting positive impression.


The Friends of the Arts Institute at Palm Springs High School, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation that supports the art programs and student arts education at Palm Springs High School. Through the generosity of donors’ tax-deductible donations, the Friends of the Arts Institute is able to fund enrichment activities that directly benefit the students in the program. These activities include awarding scholarships, providing additional classroom supplies to arts teachers, furnishing stoles at graduation, obtaining guest speakers, subsidizing the cost of field trips, and providing funding assistance for mentoring programs. The Friends of the Arts Institute encourages volunteers to speak to classes about their career in the arts, to help with fundraising, or to act as a student mentor. If you would like further information, want to make a donation, or are looking for volunteer opportunities, please contact the us by email at:
or by mail at:

Friends of the Arts Institute
P. O. Box 813
Palm Springs, CA 92263

Your support is greatly appreciated!