News & Events

Message from the President


Dear Idyllwild Arts Community,

When the pandemic caused schools to move from their campuses to online learning in March 2020, I started convening weekly with other school leaders in online chats, webinars, and Zoom meetings. Whether leaders come from independent schools, boarding schools, or progressive and traditional schools around the world, these online communities allow us to wrestle with the ways in which we would like to see education change for students of all ages. To quote one participant, “The change we seek will not come via critical mass, but critical connections.

The throughline I hear in all of these gatherings is the full-throated commitment to the students we serve and the affirmation to prepare them to meet the challenges of their generation. Each call reminds me of the role an education in the arts plays in the life of a young person and the foundation that Idyllwild Arts provides to every citizen artist we serve. 

During the pandemic, the Idyllwild Arts leadership took the bold step of envisioning the future of learning and the impact of an Idyllwild Arts education. After engaging in a rigorous planning process, the Idyllwild Arts Board of Trustees has adopted a Strategic Impact Plan that will enhance current Idyllwild Arts offerings and broaden our reach around the world to provide arts education to learners beyond our Academy and Summer Program. 

Over the past seventy-five years, Idyllwild Arts has become one of the nation’s leading arts institutions. Building on our unique programs such as Art In Society, Arts Enterprise Laboratory, the Native American Arts Program, and more will allow Idyllwild Arts to reach beyond its hilltop haven to give access to the creative process, promote collaboration over competition, and share our belief that art is the greatest teacher of humanity.       

Throughout its history, Idyllwild Arts has continually sought to evolve and innovate. As we move through the 21st century we look clear-eyed at the uncertainties, challenges, and tremendous opportunities that await this generation, and we renew our commitment to remain the intentionally founded respite for those who believe in citizen artists and the impact they can make in society.  

The Mission of Idyllwild Arts is “Changing lives through the transformative power of art.” Our  graduates step forward as more attuned individuals capable of differentiating themselves in their fields and through their work. To prepare young adults to rise to the challenges of their generation, we will broaden our reach to engage citizen artists from around the world who believe that art itself is not the sole outcome of a creative life, but rather the means to constant and necessary growth – personally, professionally, and globally.


Pamela Jordan
Idyllwild Arts Foundation