Brief History of the Western Art Academy
From 1984 until 2009, the Western Art Academy was administered by the Cowboy Artists of America Museum, now the Museum of Western Art. As summer sessions continued, the academy changed from a six-week college drawing class to a non-college-credit, three-week art workshop and was not always housed on the Schreiner University campus. For a brief period, it was housed at various Hill Country area summer camp ranches with classes held at the museum.
The Western Art Academy continued to grow and eventually returned to the university. Becoming a much more intensive course than what began as simply one summer drawing class, it expanded from the original eight seniors to include freshmen, sophomores, and juniors with the session size increasing to 48 students by 2010.
From 1996 until 2014, the San Antonio Livestock Exposition™ supported the academy sending five students in the early years and eventually increasing that number to 14 of their art competition winners. In 2014 the Fort Worth Stock Show and Rodeo™ began supporting their winning art students with two scholarship positions to the academy.
In 2010, the option of two college credits was offered to the students through Montana State University-Northern by way of an additional partnership with the Susan Kathleen Black Foundation. This regained interest in moving back to a college level course gave program administration to Schreiner University. In 2011 the academy was extended to four weeks. This allows time for the proper number of contact hours; and WAA students who successfully complete the course receive three hours of college credit. Thus returning the academy to the original goal of the founders. Additionally by 2016 all students who successfully complete the course received three hours of transferable college credit, fees included in the scholarship.