Born in New Orleans in 1940, John T. Scott attended Xavier University of Louisiana in the 1950s where he received a B.A. in 1962. He went on to earn an M.F.A. from Michigan State University in 1965. He later returned to New Orleans as a Professor of Fine Arts at his alma mater, Xavier, where he was an influential and inspirational teacher for 40 years. He exhibited throughout the United States and also internationally. Scott received an honorary Doctor of Humanities from Michigan State University in 1995 and a Doctor of Humanities from Tulane University in 1997.