Where to begin? I graduated in '04, after which Ive basically have had no contact with the school whatsoever. good riddance I say. Noone there was really helpful when I was attending and they are completely useless when it came time for me to graduate. Makes me wonder what the "career services" department is there for. Part of the reason is that Memphis is really just an armpit of a city, (do not move there if you have allusions of being recognized for your artistic talent and supporting yourself with your art there) full of rednecks and ignorant people whose idea of art is paintings of barns with farm animals in front of them. So, after graduation you can look forward to working at the Piggly Wiggly. The school itself is maintained very well. I wondered why they were tearing up the old magnolia trees and completely renovating the exterior of the building one year when they could have used the money to hire more teachers so I could take classes I had wanted, but was told they were full (with an average student body of 300 annually). The faculty is a mishmosh of people who are basically failures in the art world, who hide behind the security of an academic setting. They are useless when it comes to helping and giving real world guidance about supporting yourself after college with your artistic talents, mostly because they havent really experienced that themselves. The city itself, again an armpit. Don't attend the school if you think theres some kind of art scene, or any kind of scene for that matter, youd have more luck catching a glimpse of Elvis on Beale St. The school and the city its in sucks. If you decide to go here, do so at your own risk...to your future. I suggest choosing a school with a better rep and one that most people have heard of..somewhere like Risd or something.
This school screwed me over. I was a transfer student and I regret more than anything transferring to this school. I came in the spring semester as a first semester sophomore, when I met with administration officials for orientation there were many many things they "forgot" to tell me, such as every student having a mailbox where important letters and information are placed. The school bought the apartment building I live in and told me they knew I was there, and yet they mailed everything from grades to information on the fall semester to the wrong address, and I never got them. When I was I diagnosed with a severe illness and went to talk to my teachers about extra help I was told to "stop making excuses" and to return when I was ready to be a "serious student." When I talked to the Dean of Students about this she told me it was out of her hands and the school had no written policy on how to handle a student in need. She promised to email my teachers, and never did. This school is all talk. People are very sweet while you're applying but once you're there you get very little. They are also terrible about answering phonecalls, they answer about 1 in 20. And don't ever return messages. If you want to talk to someone, plan on going to the school in person. I would not recommend this school to anyone, ever. They screwed me over and I'm still recovering.
I think overall it has done more harm than good. I mean I learned technical & aesthetic things, but that's about it. I still have over $20,000 in loans and making what I make, it will take forever to pay it off. Due to my financial situation, I am trapped where I am, still living with my parents, working a lousy job and sharing a car with them. It's not like MCA gave a damn about what I was going to do after college, as far as jobs and galleries were concerned. They pormised us all sorts of thing when we got there, but then they didn't follow through. I heard things like "I don't know what to tell you." Thanks, I'm really glad I spent so much time and money to be in a worse place than I was, with an extremely useless piece of paper. ***What should I have known and what should others do. First, avoid this place. Second, make sure any art college you attend follows through on the assistance they promise you after college. It's not like your getting an MBA here, where people are out actively recruiting you and throwing giant piles of money at you. This is a very complicated unforgiving career path and you need all the help you can get.