StudentsReview :: The Ringling College of Art and Design - Comments and Student Experiences
  
-or-
Search for Schools by Region
 

or within distance of city

Similar Schools
School of the Art Institute of Chicago -- Chicago, IL
Savannah College of Art and Design -- Savannah, GA
Art Center College of Design -- Pasadena, CA


  Who's got the Best?

Perceptual Rankings:
You Make 'Em.
We Post 'Em.
You Vote 'Em Up.
You Vote 'Em Down.
Aww yeah.


The Ringling College of Art and Design

Select Comment

Positive Neutral Negative Advice

There are 36 Comments

Sort By: [Date] [Major] [Rating]  

View

Ringling is not an "average" college experience

Jun 22 2014Art & Design Department
Ringling is not an "average" college experience. If you are looking for wild weekends, crazy parties or lots of free time, look elsewhere! The focus at Ringling is absolutely not on a well-rounded college experience. You will be worked to your limits to create amazing artwork, and if you come in to the program with those expectations, you'll be just fine.

Let's start with the good- faculty here is AMAZING. Even in your first semester as a freshman, your professors will be industry professionals who are for the most part overwhelmingly kind, helpful, and excited about teaching. Since class sizes are so small (anywhere from 10-20 students in a studio), you'll form a solid personal relationship with all of your professors. It's important to keep in mind that you get out of a class exactly what you put in- if you slack off on your assignments or are disrespectful, you're not going to get any respect or extra help from your professors. (Since it is such a small school, the professors gossip a TON- one incident can give an entire department the wrong impression about you in a flash.)

Also fantastic is the caliber of guest speakers that come visit campus. Actors like Elijah Wood, Aubrey Plaza, and Justin Long have come to visit and work with the Digital Film students. Glenn Vilppu comes to work with the freshmen every year. The Digital Painting Sketch Club pulls in some incredible demo artists, from Bobby Chiu to Aaron Blaise. There's no shortage of talent among upperclassmen, either, and most are eager to meet with underclassmen and talk about their artwork.

In terms of coursework, it can be very frustrating (especially in the first year) how slow the pace is. Ringling's first year curriculum very much focuses on the absolute basics- composition, design, basic techniques. It's a very solid foundation, but it can be infuriating watching your peers at CalArts complete full animated films while you're still working on a ball bounce. However, nothing feels like busywork. Most professors are very good about explaining the teaching points behind each assignment so you know exactly what you're working to improve.

I would not recommend coming to Ringling if you are not absolutely sure of your choice in major. It is very difficult to switch majors, and most students who do will spend an extra year (and $40,000) at the school.

Ringling definitely throws most of their support behind the Media Arts (Illustration, Computer Animation and Game Art), Digital Film, and Motion Design. Most of the focus on campus goes towards promoting these five majors. Not that the other majors aren't worthwhile (for instance, Interior Design flies way under the radar but has won a ton of national awards), but you can certainly find a comparable degree at other colleges for far less money. Business of Art and Design is also a great program and has produced some graduates who go on to incredible jobs immediately after graduating.

One thing that I was startled by were the senior thesis shows at the end of the year. Although there were a few great projects, many were unexceptional- and a few were downright bad. Ringling does a great job promoting their successful students, and has proven to be even better at hiding their mediocre ones.

Activities outside of coursework are lacking, to say the least. The exceptions are a few excellent art-focused clubs (like DPSC and FEWS). Sarasota has zero nightlife, and parties around campus are rare. I cannot stress enough that if you want a traditional college experience with lots of parties and alcohol this is absolutely not the school for you! Sarasota is a charming city, but not very accessible to students without a car.

The area directly surrounding campus is not particularly savory. I have never felt unsafe on campus, but even visiting the gas station across the street can prove to be a harrowing experience. Car accidents are common, so be aware when walking or biking around and always take a friend with you.

In summary, Ringling is definitely not for everyone. I would explore other options if you enjoy having lots of free time, are unsure that you are not 100% committed to your major, or want a more traditional college experience. If you are passionate about your major, have a strong work ethic, and are prepared to be totally committed to art, this is the school for you!

1st Year Female -- Class 2017
Campus Aesthetics: A+, Social Life: C

What a waste of lifetime and money

Mar 03 2014Video/Media
What a waste of lifetime and money. This money hungry prison simply uses the students talents to get their accreditation up and to make money off them. I could have learned more about film in 2 weeks watching youtube videos then the 1 semester i was here at ringling. No student should pay $200,000 for a 4 year school, the students that go here are blind to that either because they are rich or just think they will leave the small ghetto school and get hired by a production company. There isn't many successful alumni here, most are realizing the school was a complete joke. There isn't much variety of personalities here, mostly stuck up, overweight, scary, dweeby, or oddly too nice. I could n't complain enough about this school, i had more fun in 6th grade then at ringling. The school is a wasteland on the weekends and the parties are just awful. If you can even find one that is decent. There is crackheads walking through here all the time because the school isn't even in the nice part of sarasota. The food is fattening and disgusting. I'd rather eat cardboard with ranch. Minus brickman but they don't give you any damn food. The kids who come here obviously went to a boring high school where they don't understand how to have fun on the weekends. The teachers give you bullshit homework most of the time. I didn't learn a damn thing the first semester literally. I had all a's and b's though. I was in keating, which was just about as creepy as an abandoned jail at night. The fact that i had to walk all the way down the hall for running water was absurd. Even if you have a car, good luck finding other people to go to the beach with, none of the girls i met enjoyed it? The first semester i was highly jelly of all my former high school grads who were attending normal universities. i saw instagrams of them meeting good looking guys, at fun parties, going to dances and football games, and here I am getting convinced to watch anime with a guy. There is a reason there is only a 1000 kids here, I really hope the dropout rate increases so kids don't waste their young lives here. Looking for a husband or wife? You won't find one here. They have a facebook crush page, which I find hilarious. Every post on the page is like "i'm too shy to talk to you, but I hope you talk to me." Like wtf? Go to any real colleges crush page and compare it to ringlings. I've seen the goofiest clothes ever here, girls with giant bunny ears casually walking around, guys with halloween costumes on every day, girls who dress as if they are 65 years old, and guys who look like they are from an anime movie. The school is only worth $5000 a year if that. I feel like this school is more of a safe haven for outcasts who avoid the real world so they can do projects and watch anime all the time. All the hot guys dropped out the first semester. So good luck with that girls. There were some decent well rounded people here, though many of the ones I met dropped out. I have nothing nice to say about my experience here besides the weather. Oh yeah. The teachers are artists, not teachers. They grade your work based off their opinions. Please do not go here i beg you. Save the money and go to a real school with real people.
1st Year Female -- Class 2017
Campus Aesthetics: A+, Education Quality: F

I am a freshman graduate from Ringling and I can honestly

Apr 29 2014Other
I am a freshman graduate from Ringling and I can honestly say these negative reviews have had me laughing for quite some time. Yes, Ringling does over-accept. This doesn't mean they are out to get you specifically or that they want to fail you out, every college does this. If you did well in high school because you submitted your work on time (and you are also good at art to some degree) you will be completely fine. In my opinion the Perspective class (Drawing I & II) are not challenging to the point of failure if you are honestly trying your best.

Many people are bitter that Ringling does not wipe their butt for them. No; no art school will TEACH you to draw. You are expected to already be an artist in some way shape or form and you are here to improve. The Figure Drawing classes will make your work improve greatly by the time your done, I promise, but it doesn't TEACH you how to draw. You learn to draw through practice. If you're completely honest to yourself and say you are good enough to make art your career within four years of improvement in your field, then come to an art school. It is that simple.

It doesn't mean you have to be a master when you get here, it means you have to be able to have work that is already very good. If you are not passionate about art enough to be at least decent at it do not go to an art school. There are people in my major who graduated and I honestly wasn't very impressed with their work, so if you fail the first year here you are either lazy or not talented in art. It is not possible to shove enough art knowledge into your face within the first semester to make you a master at art. Art is complex. It takes years to improve greatly, not days. So think again if your plan is to start learning to draw when you get here.

Also, I genuinely feel safe on campus day and night. I know that there are some rougher areas nearby but honestly that area and the campus are like day & night. They are completely different from one another and certainly things DO happen, but if I were to make the decision to come here again I would not be deterred by the 1 or 2 petty crimes that have occurred during the entirety of the year. Honestly people are highly over-exaggerating, and I would too if I lost 50k because I thought art school was going to be easy.

The food on the other hand... I'll have to agree with that one. Brickman has some really good food but they only give you just enough. Hammonds has great breakfast but oftentimes their dinner selection is disappointing at best. Lunch is great because you can order a pressed sandwich which is always good and fresh. If they opened the deli for both lunch and dinner I would be impressed. Overall when you have the choice just don't sign up for the meal plan. If you have a car there's a Costco not too far from the school where you can buy food in bulk for cheap. Walmart is within walking distance as well but yes, it does close at 10pm.

As far as the teachers go I haven't been dissatisfied with a single one. I absolutely adored most of them actually. Art teachers are some of the most interesting and kindest of individuals. I've been thoroughly impressed by their experience and their passion for the courses. I was so happy with them and I've improved miles due to their positive critique. In my opinion, some of the bitter reviews are from those who cannot handle critique. Critiques are solely for the purpose of your improvement and you can't improve without an insult to your art here and there. It really isn't an insult actually, it's professional help and it's not personal at all. People take it personally when asked to improve something in there art. Yet, how does one expect to improve if they can't see their own errors? It is a huge part of getting better and some people aren't strong-willed enough to handle it.

As far as students, it's a mixed bunch. Just like life. If you are prepared to deal with people in the real world just like you will have to in the future (in a professional setting), you'll be fine. Yes there are a few oddballs but nothing that bad and in my opinion there aren't that many. Just don't be judgmental and befriend people regardless. Try your best not to get into disputes with people. The school is small so if someone is wise enough to tell Residence Life they could threaten your status at the school very easily. This includes drug/alcohol abuse. If you're caught by a student you may very well be caught by the school as well and there are consequences.

Also, if possible TAKE YOUR CAR. Having a car makes free time more fun and you can even drive 5 minutes to the beach just because you feel like it. It also makes you more approachable and more fun as a friend when you can offer rides to those who need it. People here are typically kind enough to pay you back in some form and it's all around just great to have a car even if you're a "loner". There is so much to do in Sarasota and the surrounding area is absolutely gorgeous. Art festivals occur here every weekend and you're right next to an aquarium, a beach, a marina, a city, a small zoo, a beautiful bridge to run on, and Puppytown (a pet store where you can pet all of the puppies). The list goes on and on. So to those who complain there's nothing to do, I don't know what else you could ask for. Make friends and/or bring a car.

Overall, if you believe that your art skills are good enough to make you a professional within just four years of improvement, go to an art school. If you want to live in a vacation spot while you're at it and want excellent teachers who have worked at Disney etc., choose Ringling.

1st Year Female -- Class 2017
Education Quality: A+, Perceived Campus Safety: B
About Us | Advertise! | Press
Send Comments/Suggestions to: sradmin@studentsreview.com.

Copyright © 2000-2014. StudentsReview, All Rights Reserved.
 

 

Disclaimer: StudentsReview makes no claims, promises, or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the contents of this site, and expressly disclaims liability for errors and omissions in the contents of this site. Furthermore, StudentsReview is not affiliated with any University or Institution.

All Universities in Florida (FL), College Search, College Rankings