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Multi-million dollar project in the works for Santa Barbara High School’s Visual Arts & Design Academy

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SANTA BARBARA, Calif, - It’s considered "a school within a school."

“I have a daughter who’s now a sophomore in the program ... I just fell in love with this everything this program is doing for students … she’s able to launch with her skills and experiment and try new things.”
Students at the The visual arts and design academy … known as VADA … will soon get to enjoy a whole new building," said president Andy Beall of Friends of VADA.

"During the school board meeting we got our building approved that we’ve been working on for five years … very exciting moment," said program director Daniel Barnett of VADA.

The new facility will include administrative office space as well as a conference room and two studio classrooms. 

“I’m excited about this project because we’ve been running the program in a sort of outdated facility and we’re trying to show our kids that they have a place in the future workforce where their art and design skills are needed," said Barnett.

Art teachers said they believe this project will encourage students to feel the value of their creative skills. 

"My hope is that students are going to be able to reach new levels and their potential and kind of their creativity and their output and showcase their artwork just because the new facility is going to enable that," said Barnett.

One design lab will be used for digital design and photography.

There will also be a lab built for more traditional analog art studio.

“I hope when this project gets underway is that it’s going to form a beacon for students around the Santa Barbara community to realize that art and creative efforts is a home for really anyone who wants to come and join this organization," said Beall.

Santa Barbara High’s VADA program is a four-year, career-technical educational program serving about 220 students.

Article Topic Follows: Lifestyle

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Patricia Martellotti

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