myCMTN Apply

First Nations Fine Arts | Diploma


In 2021/2022 sections may offered in-person or via Distributed Learning. Learn more about Distributed Learning at CMTN. Individual sections may vary, please contact if you have any questions.

First Nations Fine Arts (FNFA) is a vibrant, successful two-year Freda Diesing School of Northwest Coast Art Diploma program that seeks to honour and support the rich culture and tradition of First Nations art in the Northwest.

Students of Aboriginal descent develop a solid foundation in First Nations Northwest coast art while they learn and practice the traditional art of woodcarving alongside world-renowned master artist/instructors Dempsey Bob (Tahltan/Tlingit), Stan Bevan (Tahltan/Tlingit/Tsimshian), Ken McNeil (Tahltan/Tlingit/Nisga'a), Nathan Wilson (Haisla), and Nakkita Trimble (Nisga'a).

The First Nations Fine Arts program includes field trips to important cultural events and sites, museums and galleries. Visiting artists, dignitaries and cultural advocates enhance the learning environment with their knowledge, wisdom and experience. Students mount a number of public art exhibits each year to acquire the skills required by professional artists to display, promote and sell their own creative work.

First Nation Fine Arts Diploma

Students begin with fundamentals of two-dimensional Northwest coast art design, drawing and painting basics, followed by building and using traditional tools, and traditional work carving techniques.

Students carve a number of pieces to build their proficiency. These include small- to medium-sized plaques, spoons, portrait masks and bowls. All students are expected to participate in carving program legacy projects that will remain at Coast Mountain College campuses and make the College campuses more welcoming and supportive of First Nations learners.

Students can opt for a one year certificate or complete two years of study to earn a diploma. 

Apply to CMTN

Visit Apply to CMTN for an Admissions Checklist and to apply online.

Our Educational Advisors are here to help if you have any questions or need guidance along the way.

Dates and locations

Intake Location
Fall 2021 Terrace Campus


Faculty Member Campus Location
Stan Bevan Terrace
Ken McNeil Terrace
Nakkita Trimble Terrace

First Nations Fine Arts (FNFA) is a two-year Freda Diesing School of Northwest Coast Art diploma program. Students begin with basic drawing and two dimensional design techniques and the history of designs and crests, followed by tool-making and traditional wood carving techniques to develop a solid foundation in the traditions of Northwest Coast art. All students are expected to participate in carving the program projects.


FNFA 126Wood Carving & Design-Traditional Spoon3
FNFA 127Wood Carving & Design-Traditional Bowl3
FNFA 204Professional Fn Artist Devel. II Design I3
FNFA 206Exhibitons and Curating II Design I3
FNFA 226Intermediate Wood Carving & Design - Intermediate Crest Spoon3
FNFA 228Intermediate Wood Carving & Design - Portrait Mask3
FNFA 230Intermediate Wood Carving & Design - Moon Mask4
FNFA 232Intermediate Wood Carving & Design - Crest Bowl4
FNFA 234Intermediate Wood Carving & Design - Crest Mask4
Total Credits30

Successful completion of the FNFA Certificate or permission of program coordinator after applicant interview and assessment.

Fees Full-time domestic
Full-time: 32 Credits
Tuition: $4,807.68
Student Union Fees:1 $83.98
Extended Health and Dental* $250.00
Mandatory Fees: $241.92
Total Tuition: $5,383.58
Additional Costs:
*Total Program Cost: $6,783.58

Fees are effective as of August 1, 2021 for the 2021/22 academic year


These fees are term based and may vary due to the length of the program.


Please note that these are approximate costs and may vary depending on courses taken. 

The Coast Mountain Students Union (CMSU) is pleased to announce that Extended Health and Dental Insurance has been approved by student referendum held in March 2021. Additional information will be provided by CMSU July 2021, including details of the coverage and directions for the opt out process for students with equivalent coverage. For any inquiries about the plan or referendum, please contact Golnoosh Namazi,

Furthering education

NEW! First Nations Fine Arts Advanced Diploma

Graduates of the FNFA Diploma can now ladder into CMTN's First Nations Fine Arts Advanced Diploma.  Our new 10-month Advanced Diploma specializes in business courses, jewelry and sculpture with a mentoring approach that increases confidence for students moving forward in their artistic careers.

Students who complete the First Nations Fine Arts Diploma with a GPA of B or better will also be eligible for acceptance into the third year of the Bachelor of Fine Arts (Visual or General Fine Arts major) degree program at Emily Carr University of Art + Design.