SAY NO TO Ai!!!
As the majority of DeviantArt is people who are interested in art, and around the age of choosing a college, I feel this is a relevant issue to make a group about here. Especially since it is impossible not to see “ART INSTITUTE OF PITTSBURGH” flashing all over the site. If anyone has any bad AI experiences, please share! Spread the awareness and don’t let this money hungry corporation ruin anyone else’s life! I personally went to an AI school and can verify bad things about the school that are mentioned in the reviews posted below. It keeps me awake at night thinking of all the people who are in massive debt and can’t get an above-minimum-wage job because of EDMC.
Read for yourself how this company has affected student’s lives: www2.studentsreview.com/search…
And read employee accounts as well: www.jobvent.com/edmc-education…
STUDENT MURDERED IN AI SPONSORED HOUSING: crimeblog.dallasnews.com/archi…
A portal with lots of useful reading: tampastudents.net/
video on the subject: www.youtube.com/watch?v=B7OHrV…
NOTE: Not all art schools with ‘Institute’ in the name are EDMC owned (like the School of the Art Institute of Chicago). Research which ones are legitimate before requesting information!
Another scam art school frequently advertised on this site is Full Sail University. THEY ARE JUST AS BAD: www.dperry.com/archives/articl…
I also looked into Full Sail University since my counselor suggested it to me. I didn't get any calls or anything but from what I saw on their website and the brochure I was really impressed and wanted to go. I again came across the school's bad reputation and I immediately had no interest in any for profit school. This was the site that did it:fullsailreviews.net/
Bottom line: DO NOT GO TO A FOR PROFIT SCHOOL!
Do your research, you'll find a good school for your passion. Just don't go looking for it here
Why don't more artists just find a good Junior College that specializes in the type of art/film/fashion/music/cooking they want to learn? Jr College is cheap but they have reputations and you can find one that is great for the type of field you want to go into. You'll be so happy you did. Tech Schools are pipe dreams that pretend to be something much more than they really are. And all their big profits just go back into Advertising. Not the school or in hiring good teachers who are often in fact rejected teachers from real colleges
Here is a great video that sums up "for profit" colleges like the "Art Institutes". He talks about game schools in the video because he is a professor of game development at Digpen but You can easily fill in "game school" with any for profit college....hit's the nail on the head, in my opinion.
Thank you guys for the comments and warnings.
I already out over 14 thousand dollars. I can't work a full time job, so I'm not making enough to survive and go to school. I live on campus in which I absolutely hate, they don't monitor these places at all, and they just shack you up with anyone. I don't smoke or drink and the people they have me here with have friends over who smoke WEED, etc, I don't do drugs nor do I want to be around any of that or inhale that stuff. I too just wanted to leave home and be on my own, but I WENT ABOUT IT THE WRONG WAY, NO MONEY, NO CAR JUST WENT ON IMPULSE. You file complaints and they don't do anything.
This school is very shady all they care about is the money, I know this now. The teachers tend to be rude and arrogant at times. They teach way too fast and never teach the entire lesson because the classes are too short to learn so much. I learn more form YOUTUBE than I do in class. I wanted to take a quarter off to work and save up money and come to find out even if I'm out of school I still have to pay these people, why am I paying if I'm not attending class? That doesn't make any sense, and I've heard if you leave they will try to make you pay in full, which for me means $80,000 up front. I stay broke, feel like I'm not learning anything, not happy with the dorms and just don't know what to do anymore. I had to apply for food stamps cause I never have money in my pocket. Can't pay the bills. Feel like an idiot, all I wanted to do was learn how to make film, not go into debt for the rest of my life. I know all schools are expensive but this one takes the cake. They try so hard to make you stay all yo are to them is a paycheck, it's sad and it's wrong. Something needs to be done.
I was called up by the art institue o f pittsburg. I graduated with a GPA of 1.0 (I'm not stupid. I just had a horrible childhood in and out of foster care, and being moved around. I even did a G.E.D. program at one point, which was a work program. Until moving from Florida to Ohio once I turned 18 and actually went back and finished high school) Regardless, no actual art institute would take me, until Ai called me. I haven't had a job for a year, and was housebound (we have one car and my boyfriend works from 2pm to 2am) I also suffer from a suffer paranoia when I leave the house alone, making it hard to go anywhere without my bf.
Regardless, AI Called me, and when I explained everything, no job, no real outside world access, the only income I made was through my art and odds and ends that I sell online. Which hardly brings in 50 dollars a month. They told me not to worry, they were more then certain that financial aid could cover almost all my cost, at most I would only have to pay a few hundred to get my my degree. Three days on the phone with them, going through things, setting up finacial aid and they gave me the good news. "Finacial Aid" sems to pay for everything". A d@mn dream come true. So Obviously, I didn't think to ask "How much do classes cost?" After all, I'm not paying for it. So who cares?
Until two weeks later I get the bill for this first quarter 12 weeks of classes online. Tthousand dollars. And get this. Financial aid? Eh. Gov will cover a thousand. The rest they signed me up for student loans. And I' have the opinion of dropping out that very second and paying it ALL or wait until the end of the quarter and the governments financial aid will cover that 1000 at least.
i dropped out after the quarter of course, after learning stuff I ALREADY knew from my previous college classes at a community college that cost me 300 dollars a class. No where near this 7 thousand their asking. And I went to an actual campus where the school supplied us with our things.
Still don't have a job, no money to my name. (I am currently actually going through a trial where a family member of mine is being charged with stealing 2.5 thousand dollars of my money I had been saving up t pay for my to buy myself my own place) (The officer who is actually standing for me in trial (My paranoia does not allow me to do well in crowds, or under pressure, or when all eyes are on me, say testifying. This is one reason I dropped out of community college) kindly told me "You are the kind of person people will always turn to for a scam. You are the kind of woman who will get cornered by criminals when your alone. You're that type of person." He was...in all honesty trying to give me a "You should watch yourself" advice, but it apparently still rings clear as I willingly run into a college that I should have been skeptical from the get go) I have medical bills and other non school debts that need to be paid.
Like I said, I am not a stupid person when it comes to intelligence, street smarts, not so much I agree, but I went into these classes and I wanted to cry at my classmates. I had some of the most stupidest people I had ever met in my classes. One man thought a picture showed "Idealism" because of the pole between the females legs (It was a picture of a amazon woman manniquin). I mean we were learning stuff I LEARNED IN HIGH SCHOOL. I should have known right off the bat, not only do to my GPA, but because they didn't ask for a portfolio or even a measley example of my work before they enrolled me. And believe me if any of the students I was with were to go by, I know exactly why college ask for these now. There were students who couldn't understand that making a "3 dimensional shape" consisted of actually doing more then putting a circle on a paper and then using a gradient tool on it.
When I first started I wanted to aim to be a 2D Animator or a Concept Artists. But now that I'm in my 3rd quarter (about to end on June 21st) my mind keeps changing on what I want to do over the course f the classes I take. I notice of what I'm good at and what I'm not. So now I'm aiming to still be a Concept Artist and maybe a Watercolor Painter. For next quarter, one of my classes I'm taking is Introduction to Watercolor Painting. So I'm excited for that class, my other three are : 2D Animation, Figure Sculpting, and Storyboarding = everyone told e I was going to die in those classes. Well I hope not
I decided to go back to school two years ago and am currently attending SCAD (by the way, they didn't take ANY of my AI credits so I had to start over). Please don't think I'm trying to rub it in or anything but..."you have no idea what you are missing!" SCAD is a FAAAAAAAARRRR superior school and I can't tell you what a breath of fresh air it was when I got accepted and toured the school. The atmosphere alone bleeds talent...hell just look at the work on the walls and visit any of the exhibitions they frequently hold or any of the panels they host from different speakers and celebrity guests. Just this quarter I will be attending a seminar held by the lead technical director at Dreamworks studios. I am about to take a quarter and study abroad at their campus in LaCoste France... A beautiful campus. It is set at one of the Marqui D'saad's castles. I've never seen anything like it.
The resources and equipment is state of the art. There is a special effects, sound and green-screen room on campus. The quality of instruction at SCAD in general, is amazing. The professors are top tier and either have or are still currently working in the industry and have done exactly what you want to do or have even written the software or partially invented some of the industry techniques they are teaching you. I'll put it this way: I'm in animation...Three of my professors where senior art directors at Disney and one of them turned down a job as technical director at EA games in order to work at SCAD. The woman who WROTE the premier book on technical lighting is "teaching" the digital lighting course I'm taking next quarter. I could go on but I think you get the picture.
The horizon is pretty competative whether you are a fine artist or if you want to illustrate or do concept art for gaming. You need the right tools.
Hang in there and I wish you well, but if you decide to go back to school (and you may need to) I hope you have the opportunity to attend a more reputable art school that you will enjoy better or maybe even SCAD in the future.
I'm currently attending Ai of Dallas (majoring in Media Arts and Animation), I've been here for 9 months now and already hearing about there being sued again from people. An that this is there seventh time being sued (heard this from a friend last week).
When I went to the Tech lab just now to rent out a Wacom table to use to work on my homework, there was a guy in the back reading the article out loud about how the Art Institutes in a whole were being sued a lot of money. I don't exactly know the full details on what the suing is all about; think it's dealing with Financial Aid. But until they make an announcement that there being sued or they lost the case, I won't be applying else where just yet nor telling my mother. :/ But over all I'm liking my experience here, I'm learning and hating homework at the same time but I'm doing my work to pass and move on to the next quarter. But I'll come back here and let yall know if anything big happens here at our school with the suing thing or if they decided to raise my price higher on how much of my tuition I'm paying each darn month, for I swear if it bumps up $200+ for my tuition each month I will transfer (Im already paying $348 or $358 each month).
but yeah other than that, it's like what the midoryu's comment says. most of it, for me and him/her so far, is depending on the admissions and financial aid and stuff that isn't directly involved with teaching. the professors are cool beans, especially those that know how to get around the system.
I went to AI Denver for four quarters. I maintained a 3.9 gpa, I had perfect attendance, I worked for EDMC in the mailroom and at the admissions desk. I also lived at the dorms, by myself due to health reasons.
The instructors there are of the highest caliber.
The financial aid, accounting, and admissions office are where the scam lies. The admissions people get paid by how many people they can get to enroll. They all have degrees in psychology and they use that knowledge to draw people in. There is a quota that they have to reach every 6 weeks or their paycheck is docked or even cuts are made. This would violate several laws if they were not a privately run corporate institute.
The financial services office is the true evil. In fact, what they did to me was so confusing that I don't understand fully what they did. I do know that I owe the school 3.5k, I owe the government 37k, and was charged another 3k for breaking the lease on my dorm room after they told me that I had to get of the dorms. They did not pay my complete tuition every quarter in order to get money out of me early. They expected $100 each month from somebody that they knew full well could not afford it. They offered a merit scholarship for$650 a quarter, but then raised the tuition. This was the only scholarship that they offered.
Meanwhile, the accounting office expected $150 a month from me, even though financial services showed only $100. They could not account for payments that I had made and could prove with receipts, and were really good at applying payments to the wrong month.
I came to the conclusion that they are a money laundering front for Goldman Sachs, exploiting students for entitlements as a student. They found a loophole where all students receive money, and they decided they wanted a piece of it.
I'm currently at the New England institute of Art in Brookline Boston. When I come on to this site I do see lots of Japanese anime drawings and people having awesome dreams of one day becoming an animator, but now that I've been going to Ai I see a trend that has been going on where lots of kids, who use and love this site, that go to the schools and are undoubtedly denied their dreams by attending the school. The bottom line is this:
Ai excepts everybody and anybody, even when they have no artistic ability.
I've been attending classes where a person who actually is in need of extra mental help has been attending classes to graduate and wants to, and was convinced by The New England institute of Art that he could get a job as being a 2D animator. He can barely draw, and when he passed in his work for 2D animation, the teacher would give his best criticism, when really the project is in the shape where it looks like it has been done by somebody with... well, mental issues... So the teacher will grade you on effort naturally, but now once reality sets in beyond the school walls, and beyond his effort, his ability will sadly not be considered in a professional field! Now he's in 3D modeling and rigging classes for game design and is dropping out. The school, in my eyes, plainly excepts anybody for money and take what it can get, even if it means taking advantage of people will mental disabilities.
I switched my major from Animation to Graphic Design because the school's animation program is undoubtedly geared toward Game Design. The classes for game design are there, but they will not tell you that you have to meet with specific terms where you learn game design more instead of what you came to learn from the school in the first place. The reason why they sneak up on you with Game design classes is because THAT is what's giving people the most jobs in the area where the school is. If your going to Ai because you want to create your own 2D animation show one day, then you aren't going to get what you are looking for. 3D animation is what is the more dominant art form, and also because Video game companies will most-likely be looking for more 3D animators.
ALL PEOPLE WHO WANT TO DRAW ANIME FOR A LIVEING: Ai will except you, and tell you you have false dreams and gear you toward 3D modeling after accepting you and making you pay heartless amounts of money.
If you want to get into Game Design then that's perfect for NEIA! go for it! but everybody else in animation who isn't into 3D modeling/3D animating/3D rigging/3D lighting/Advanced 3D modeling and learning Spline modeling, then HEEED MY WARNING. I went through half of it and switch to graphic design because I learned that I just want to help people! I want to help people re-design things and help people become more successful by using artistic methods in graphic and general Design.
Since we're sharing, though, I can brag, too:
I attended a college-preparatory private school for grades 1-12, I made straight A's all the way through, and graduated with honors with a 4.0+ GPA, 5th in my class. While attending Ringling for my BFA in illustration I maintained a 3.6+ and graduated with honors with a 3.8 GPA. I was blessed enough to be able to leave Ringling without any debt, either, because my parents made a smart play on the stock market in the late '90s which I am still very grateful for. I fail to see how any of that is relevant, though.
"So maybe if you were not being dumb and retarded in school you could have been doing good! SO DON'T BLAME THE SCHOOL FOR YOUR RETARDEDNESS AND BECAUSE YOU CANT BE SUCCESSFUL!! Own to your F**** mistakes idiot!!!!!"
Thank you for showing us your over-exaggerated ePeen. We are very impressed. Here, have a cookie: Hell, have a gold star, too:
For someone who claims to have done so well all the way through middle and high school, I'm surprised you managed to earn those good grades while apparently not learning how to comprehend what you read or construct sentences and paragraphs in a manner which makes you look/sound educated. They apparently didn't teach you common sense, either, because your view of what makes for a quality education is very idealistic, naive, and clueless.
You can be the best student in the world with gobs of cash coming out of your ass but if you go to a shit school with shit standards, shit instructors, and a shit reputation, you are going to get a shit education. Frankly you sound as though you don't know enough about your field of study to know if you're getting a quality education or not, particularly since you seem to equate "school = good" with "good = no debt", which is stupid. Being debt-free will do you no good if you didn't receive an education that is good enough to get you a good job and a solid career.
Once you are old enough to live in the Real World maybe life will hit you with a clue-by-four hard enough that you can figure out how to pull your over-inflated head out of your pompous ass and get a breath of fresh air.
First, just about all art schools are expensive. But some offer more scholarships or grants and obviously a better quality education...for example SCAD and RISD have all kinds of artistic honors scholarships. Mostly funded by donations or student and staff work exhibitions.
here is a list of some of the top art schools in the nation. Check the websites or do your own follow up research.
3.) Cal Arts
5.) Ringling Shool of Design
7.) Vancouver film school
8.) Otis College of Art and Design
9.) School of the Art Institute of Chicago (Not to be confused with the Art Institutes)
10.) TAD or The Art Dept. has great (and affordable) on campus and online courses. I suggest a combination of both.
there are more but this should get anyone started down the right path.
I took painting, ceramics, and drawing in high school and in my local community college. I had stopped going to my local community college because the degree I had wanted (a dual-major of Art & Education) had me driving between the satellite campus here in town and another one 20 miles away. This is before good ole' Indian River County had public transportation. I had received a scholarship for only $1000 from my participation in chorus and show choir, but logistics and the fact that I was ineligible for federal financial aid because both of my parents remarried forced me to have a nervous breakdown and drop out of college. Just because my parents were finally above the poverty line did not mean that they miraculously had a college fund for me.
I have had pieces displayed in the local art museum and at local art shows back in my high school days. The good old days when school was free and about learning.
The Art Institutes are a pressure cooking system. We are to partially learn things that we are paying to fully understand, with the excuse that there was just not enough time in five short weeks. None of my instructors had any formal teaching degrees and the student feedback was often times more helpful than the instructor feedback. It's like a student was expected to do find the information online and grade the assignments of our peers. Not only was forced social interaction difficult for a person with a stress disorder, but in doing the critiques it felt like (if every detail of the syllabus was followed) you were doing the instructor's job. When I asked for such accommodations for my stress disorder, my requests were ignored or denied despite doctors' notes. It would have been better to turn in everything directly to the instructor via the dropbox. It also would have been handy to have feedback from the instructor that matched the student feedback criterion! All—not most, but ALL—of my instructors made commentary that was generic or non specific at one point or another. I had one exception in my final project for Introduction to Design Applications which the instructor actually analyzed and gave suggestive feedback which helped the overall composition. That is one of the first classes, and from there the instructor involvement declined. The Adobe website proved far more useful for learning the programs than the online lectures in that class alone. Do not get me started on the antiquated information in my English and Composition. Regardless of your previous level of education, outside research is required to learn anything.
In short, I was looking for something that was more like correspondence classes, rather than a virtual classroom with required peer to peer interaction. I made this clear in my pre-application interview, that I had a stress disorder and could not handle a classroom setting. This is why I was seeking online schooling! I set out to find a structure in which I would feel more comfortable and earn an education. What I got was a hot mess and more stress. The worst part is that I tried to withdraw when I was only $200 dollars behind and was brow beat into staying. I didn't want to fail college twice, and my "Academic Councillor" preyed upon that fear. Luckily I have a friend who has been taking political science courses; I'm a bit more savvy to logical fallacies and tainted rhetoric than I used to be.
The worst part? Doing research for an assignment and finding a website EXACTLY like your class lectures. Verbatim. Pictures exactly alike. The copyright on that website was before the copyright on the online lectures. I still have screenshots. Wonder if I should do anything with them.
Basically, if an art school doesn't require a portfolio for acceptance, run away very quickly.
"In short, I was looking for something that was more like correspondence classes, rather than a virtual classroom with required peer to peer interaction."
That will be difficult to find in the visual art field. You NEED peer-to-peer interaction in order to learn when it comes to art. EVERY art school does critiques where the piece is put on the wall and the entire class gives feedback on it, because it is a critical facet of getting an education in art. The prof then puts in his own feedback when he takes the work home to grade, but the in-class critique is still vital to not only learning from your peers but learning from critiquing your peers. You have to do them whether you have social anxieties or not.
If you have anxiety that is so severe that you need a doctor's note to avoid it, art school probably isn't the place for you. Even after graduating a large part of the graphic art industry is networking with other people.