by KATHY LOY | photos by Zeena Gregg Photography

Over the past few years, school budgets have been sliced and diced and the programs most often cut are the arts. US Arts Education Center in Rancho Penasquitos aims to develop the artistic talent in all children, while encouraging creativity and increasing appreciation of the arts. “We believe that everyone has a talent in art just as everyone can talk,” said Jenny Zhao, director of the center. “We believe it is important, especially in childhood, to practice under the proper guidance and build up that confidence.”

US Arts Education Center offers an unparalleled level of high quality instruction with several teachers working concurrently at local colleges and universities. “The center is unique in that it has teachers from multiple cultural backgrounds, with local and global experience,” explained Jenny. “This provides the students with different teaching styles and areas of specialty, allowing them to develop a vision with an open mindset.” Many instructors graduated from accredited Fine Art Universities such as the Art Center in Pasadena, Otis College and prestigious universities in China, Russia, and India. This level of instruction has helped graduating students attend art programs in Pasadena, USC and Brown University.

With 400 students currently enrolled, the most popular programs at the center are drawing and painting classes while a new digital art program has developed a following as well. Class schedules are designed to meet the needs of both parents and children by offering classes seven days a week in four classrooms, which accommodate different aged siblings during the same class times. For high school students, AP and portfolio preparation programs are designed specifically to help students develop a strong art portfolio for both art and non-art majors plus build supplementary materials for college applications.

“Our fundamental goal is artistic excellence: to provide the best art education possible to our students. We collaborate with other US Arts branches, constantly working on and improving the teaching materials, teaching method, and the curriculum to ensure that our students will receive the best fine art education possible,” said Jenny. Art classes and camps are available to children ages 4-18 with class size generally limited to 8 students per instructor so that everyone gets personalized instruction.


For more information on art classes or summer camps, please contact US Arts at 858-484-7690 or visit