Do schools sometimes give students false expectations?

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  02 February 2010
Shakem you cannot be serious. *I'm holding back fury here* I have said this before and I'll say it again, so please get this past your deflector shield of a skull. We discourage continuous bad mouthing of a school for these reasons. Notice I said continuous. A few shots at a former school rarely gets the eyre of a mod. I personally have no problem with everyone discussing schools in great context, but when it becomes apparent that someone has a vendetta, then it should be stopped. Shrug.
1. Schools are amorphous and complex. You simply CANNOT rate a school like a movie. Professors change every semester, administrations adjust, budgets fluctuate, and technology updates. For example, I've taught CG at AI Indianapolis for three straight summers. The first summer was an absolute disgrace with equipment, technology help, and administration. The third had a new Cintiq lab, new tech advisers, a new Dean, and a new mission. The student evaluations were like night and day.
2. People simply should NOT decide their future, fiscal means, and livelihood off a review online. I know it's old school, but if you are interested in a school, then GO there, meet the instructors, sit in on a class, look at the student's portfolios, look at the professor's portfolio, and get a feel for your chemistry with the program. You can do your research by simply going online and checking out their program. For example, you've probably never heard of IUPUI's CG program, yet we have a former ILM artist, a former Disney animator, etc. teaching and have sent students to Pixar, Rhythm and Hues, Zoic Studios (Zombieland), Hydraulix, Firaxis Games, etc. If we had to rely on just online reviews, we'd never have a student. Most of our students come to the school and find that it's a gem and insanely cheap and build chemistry with the instructors. Shrug. Trust me, nobody is going to be discussing us online with reviews or not reviews, because most are fixated around the 10 most popular programs. Shrug.
3. This conspiracy theory of being IN with schools is mind boggling. What does cgtalk gain from having a professor at IUPUI, who nobody has heard of, help run their Courses and Schools section? I barely have the time to go pee during the day, let alone try and create a huge circle jerk with CG schools around the world.
4. Most students/people are just simply lazy and want to blame everyone but themselves. It's just soooo much easier to go online and bad mouth a school or professor than actually work on something to a high level. This is NOT to say there aren't some awful, terrible programs out there, but for the most part, when I go to the Educator's CG group every year at Siggraph, I find that the majority of the programs are having some good success. And many people never talk about hardly any of these schools. Most online discussions focus on the same 5 schools they've heard of, whether good or bad, so what's the point.
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Last edited by MrPositive : 02 February 2010 at 05:16 PM.
 
  02 February 2010
schools that say we have professors who worked at Blizzard and this film or this game and show you incredible works making you believe everyone who goes here will be doing this and charging you 80K for 2-3 years when big universites cut that in half or even smaller and don`t even give you a place to stay but they want you to pay thousands every few weeks and if you run out of money to live on you drop out but they still want the almost 100k they say you owe
 
  02 February 2010
Originally Posted by FullSailAlien: schools that say we have professors who worked at Blizzard and this film or this game and show you incredible works making you believe everyone who goes here will be doing this and charging you 80K for 2-3 years when big universites cut that in half or even smaller and don`t even give you a place to stay but they want you to pay thousands every few weeks and if you run out of money to live on you drop out but they still want the almost 100k they say you owe


I assume you did not enjoy your experience at Fullsail?

To be honest. I almost went there. Their lack of "real" student housing. And their student loan options were just too terrible. Also they couldn't name a single college that would accept college credits from their course which they claimed was an accredited college course.

Last edited by KrzysztofFus : 02 February 2010 at 06:10 AM.
 
  02 February 2010
I have to say, I'm having that problem with Full Sail now. I want to go back to school to finish off my Bachelor's but nobody will take any of the credit from Full Sail. That's why I try and steer friends or students towards a university. And I'm not really sure if they advertised they had any people from big name studios when I went. We didn't have anyone like that teaching when I went.
 
  02 February 2010
Originally Posted by FullSailAlien: schools that say we have professors who worked at Blizzard and this film or this game and show you incredible works making you believe everyone who goes here will be doing this and charging you 80K for 2-3 years when big universites cut that in half or even smaller and don`t even give you a place to stay but they want you to pay thousands every few weeks and if you run out of money to live on you drop out but they still want the almost 100k they say you owe


Punctuation. Learn to use it, please.
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  02 February 2010
I was reading posts and was thinking that it's a complex problem, but when I came to Shakem post, it became genuinely entertaining. I think admins should encourage posts like that because it adds fun value.
On a serious note, of course schools are trying to maximize profits. Of course some students are ill prepared and lazy. But even in a perfect world where all schools are inexpensive and super professional, there still would be a problem. Let's say there is 1 million people working in animation, film and games (it's probably very generous number). If there are 6 billion people on Earth and only 1% of them want to have a rewarding fun career in 3D and film, that's 60 million (this number is probably much higher). This means that only 1 in 60 people will succeed. It might sound crazy to you, but my point is - someone have to drive buses, work in coffee shops and hospitals. And becoming animator is not the only way to happiness. On the other hand if someone is very dedicated and can only afford paper supplies a few books/ tutorials and $400 computer they can learn this staff. So it's an adventure like the "Gold Rush". Some people will find "golden job" in the industry, universities will sell DREAMS of finding "golden job", and web sites will get paid by adds. It's a game, if you think about it, you are already in the gaming industry... Getting ripped off is part of the adventure, question is - can you still get through all the obstacles and reach your goal, whatever it could be at the moment...

Last edited by dreamymike : 02 February 2010 at 07:58 AM.
 
  03 March 2010
I am a few months away from graduating with a degree in animation and special effects and yet this is a field I feel I have little experience in. There are 2 reasons, the course I have been a part of for the past 3 years, and me.

As has been discussed many times in this thread, the tutors (most of them anyway) just pat you on the head and say your work is great, when really it is average at best. In my first year I was actually given a check list with what they wanted to see I could do to allow me onto the second year of the course.
Not all of the teachers are bad, I have encountered 2 who actually know how to put across their knowledge, and who are willing to tell you when your work needs to improve.

We actually have a tutor who has worked in the industry and now works free lance, he is a nice guy but his lectures are more of a showcase of what he has acomplished and not how he acomplished it.

The other massive problem I have with my course is the face that they spent 2 and a half years ignoring the fact that few of the students, myself included, are very poor artists. They didn't offer us foundation art courses, or provide lectures on colour or anything like that, they didnt even reccomend we try and learn some of this ourselves. They just let us churn out mediocre piece after mediocre of CG work.

I do not wish to fully blame my course for me graduating unprepared, I am as much to blame. I always worked hard on my assignments, but untill this year I never really applied myself. I want to be an animator, but untill this project I haven't really done any animating. This year the modules are on motion graphics, character modelling, research report, animation practice, business and enterprise, advanced animation and special effects, and a final project.

On paper that sounds ok, 2 modules on animation and a final project. The animation practic module was to do with animating realistic motion, however I couldn't simply do an acting piece, we had to make it 'interesting' and try out other methods of animating. The advanced animation module, I thought would give me a chance to try some character acting, but no, it HAS to be a 30 second piece of camera tracking.

I've just realised this has turned into a rambling rant, so I will stop here and say, if you want to come out of uni with more then a degree, work your arse off and go to online forums and your piers for critique. Your teachers will do nothing but tell you how brilliant you are
 
  03 March 2010
Originally Posted by leigh: Punctuation. Learn to use it, please.


Or you might get banned from this site. For the greater good of the CG Society.

Last edited by manofthunder : 03 March 2010 at 05:09 PM.
 
  03 March 2010
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