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The Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design

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Had some good experiences with some faculty atQuite BrightArt & Design Department
Had some good experiences with some faculty at MIAD (mostly Liberal Arts faculty who supported and helped me, wish I could have majored in those subjects).The curriculum given at MIAD in most majors (especially majors considered Design) do not prepare you for the professional world after. Yes, MIAD is very hands on and you work with a lot of outside sources, but MIAD is very set in their old ways, giving little to no room for modern techniques including 3D rendering programs, Mobile application design, or coding, which is critical in current design careers. If I had to do it all over again I would go to another school, although MIAD gave me the most financial aid I can't say it was the best college experience, maybe it was the major I picked but the overall experience was not what I thought college would be. Other small details ruined the experience for me, although the school in located in the center of the third ward which gives many opportunities, the location is not fit for college atmosphere and the campus consists of 1 building, with a building across the street for dorms that does not even belong to the college. The cafeteria where most of the school events take place is in the basement and has a depressing atmosphere to it, and the food is alright, but could use more variety and options for students of different needs--the hours are also not helpful.
4th Year Female -- Class 2015
Surrounding City: A-, Faculty Accessibility: F
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A lot of the people here are tryingBrightArt & Design Department
A lot of the people here are trying to place the blame on anything but themselves for their failures in life. College is what you make of it, it's up to you to manage deadlines, seek help when necessary, and to grow as an artist. If you aren't going to put in the extra effort, this school (and every other art school) is going to do nothing for you. Also, keep an open mind. Many young artists come in thinking that they already know a lot/have a lot of talent, and 90% of the time this is not true. Accept critique from your peers and teachers as much as you possibly can.

One aspect of MIAD that I really like is how small it is, you really get to know the student body and all of the teachers on first-name basis. This also makes it very easy to go up and talk to your teachers one-on-one. While I have noticed that it's hard to get a good critique of your work in class, if you make the extra effort to go up to your teacher after class you will get a great response. Plus you'll get on their good side because they know you actually care. That's the biggest thing at MIAD- even if you aren't the most talented, as long as you show that you are passionate and CARE about your art, teachers will bend over backwards to help you. Sure, there are some pretty bad teachers (especially during the foundations year), but once you get into your majors classes the teaching improves. The foundations year is awful, they make you do a ton of busywork that tests your technical skills, and it's boring. They are trying to weed out those who don't have what it takes, so try to stick through until sophomore year. Sophomore year is hell compared to your first year, but it's worth it because you're taking classes that you actually enjoy (if you're in the right major).

2nd Year Female -- Class 2017
Individual Value: A, Useful Schoolwork: C
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Alright. I'm not going to BS anyone whoArt & Design Department
Alright. I'm not going to BS anyone who is reading this because I think you, prospective college student, deserve that much. Picking a college is hard, and it's important that someone be honest to you. I'm not writing this out of bitterness, revenge, or pushing my school as being the best thing ever. I honestly want you to make a good choice that will make sure that you, aspiring freshman, will not be miserable and hate your life. So, with that said, here is my review.

First of all, art school is NOT a magical place where artists frolic and share their feelings and everything is rainbows in sunshine. It's a place to hone something you enjoy into a career and bring you from casual artist to professional designer. Your first year will be the hardest thing you've ever gone through in your life. You will paint and draw and sketch until your arms ache. You will work on paintings you hate, for teachers you hate, and you will be expected to improve constantly. You will work, and work, and work some more, and if you do not absolutely love art, you will probably fail. Even if you love art, you might still. And you'll probably start to hate it just a little.

You're probably thinking "oh my god that sounds HORRIBLE, why would I ever want to go through that!?" and are wondering why I'm telling you this. Like I said, I want to be honest. See, that first year is to give you a taste of what could be the crunch time of an artist, when you have too much work, inspiration is sometimes fleeting, and you're tired of everything. You'll discover quickly if it's something you think you can deal with the rest of your life. It's better that you find out freshman year if you can stand the stress of being an artist than finding out after you graduated.

After freshman year, things will lessen a little. Teachers will no longer demand technical exercises from you, at least not strictly, and they will start letting you expand. You will find what teachers you like, what kind of creative encouragement works well for you, and hopefully, will start finding your creative voice. It will still be hard, and plenty demanding, and your ideas and approach may even come under fire this time. But you will start to grow into an artist, if you're willing.

Willingness is a big part of art school. You can't just tell someone how to draw, you have to show them how they can learn. And you, as a student, have to learn to expand your own talents. Sometimes people support you, sometimes they don't. That's pretty much life. No one is going to coddle you and hold your hand, they are not going to tell you exactly what you should do (and those that do, you'll probably hate them anyway). Some of the teachers will do well to nurture you, and if you are willing, you can expand and greatly improve what you do. You can find a unique style, and you can go from basic to professional astonishingly fast. It's a space that can really let you spread your wings. Where there's a will, there's a way could be the motto of the school.

But, as a part of that, there are those who will try and clip those wings. Teachers, peers, and evil printers are just a few obstacles. And you're probably thinking "god, why would I want to go to a school where there are some teachers who are awful?" and I'll tell you why. People will kick you when you're down in the real world. They will drag you through the mood, fight you, hate you, and try and shove you off any pedestal you might try and perch on. But that's life. Would you rather a college not prepare you for that, and be nothing but sunshine and rainbows? Because I wouldn't. I know how to take a fall now, I know what it's like to give and give and give some more and still be struck down.

See, college is like real life. Any place that doesn't prepare you for the real world, and teach you that real life can be crappy is a waste of money. Does MIAD teach you that being an artist is very rewarding, and also teach you how to use your skills to make money? Yeah. You'll get a great education, if you're willing to pursue it. People from my class and the class before me and the class after mine are already making impressive careers. The people that do the best poured every ounce of themselves into getting the best education they possibly could, and reaped the benefits. But MIAD will not spoon feed you success. They will offer you the tools to succeed, and the environment you can grow in. But, dear student, it isn't easy. And that's the honest truth. I'm happy I went to MIAD because it wasn't rainbows and unicorns and gumdrops all the time. It sucked sometimes, it really did. But it was also amazing, and I fond out just how much I love art, and it prepared me for the real world. I can survive as an artist. That's what I went to college for, and that's what they prepared me to do. And they prepared me very, very well.

Alumnus Male -- Class 2000
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