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In the two years I've been at SCAD, overall I feel a bit... meh. Granted, there were other factors that contributed to this feeling (mostly problems with living situations. Dorm life could have been much, MUCH better), but in hindsight I feel that I should've gone to a community college or a state university for the first year, THEN transferred. Or had I known I could've filled out withdrawal-pre-requisite forms, I could've skipped many fundamental classes and saved time and money. The English 101 class is somewhat of a joke (we only watched movies and wrote 1-page long responses. I wish I did better on my AP exams, then I could've skipped this), and from what I've heard about math, it's basic algebra. I've had fantastic and inspiring professors, and I've had downright terrible, rude, and unhelpful ones... Honestly, out of the 18 professors I've experienced, I feel only 2 or 3 of them truly inspired me to do my best. Maybe that's normal, I don't know. Ratemyprofessors.com is a great help when registering for classes, as well as word of mouth. SCAD likes to brag about their facilities, renovated dorms, bus systems, great security, and what have you. It does seem nice on paper and during the SCAD Day tour, but the reality is a lot different. Animation is one of the biggest departments at SCAD, but President Paula Wallace spends our money on -Equestrian Studies- when half our cameras and capture stations don't work properly, no matter how many students fill out the end of term surveys complaining about this. I'm not going to lie, the dorms definitely leave something to be desired. There's a reason why they only show Turner House on the tour... I lived in Dyson, which was dank and dark, and felt like a swampy cave. When my father visited me in Savannah for the first time, he said he was disappointed with where I was living for what he's paying. Turner House is slightly better because it was actually built to be a dorm (Dyson and Turner Annex were motels before), but Turner House has their problems. The only plus I can think of with the dorms is that they gave people the opportunity to be closer together... but even then, you'd want to destroy your neighbors when you haven't slept in ages. Plus there were a lot of moments where Turner's fire alarm system would malfunction, and kids were evacuated outside. One time they were outside in the winter for two hours -at night-. I could start on the meal plans, but all you need to know is "Sodexo". Aside from the weekends, the bus systems are very handy, even to an off-campus student like myself. However, there are a lot of complaints about the bus drivers, whether they are taking too long of breaks, or they skip a stop, or general rudeness. On the one hand, I sympathize with them because they have to drive around hundreds of whiny hipsters every day, as well as the suspicion that they're not being paid enough, providing reason why they act they way they do sometimes. But on the other, I have to agree with the whiny hipsters when I'm about to miss a class, or I'm stuck in a place for an hour. I HIGHLY recommend investing in a bicycle as an alternative, I don't know where I'd be without mine. Yes, Savannah is a beautiful city, but there are definitely parts one should avoid. I live not too far from Arnold Hall, maybe three blocks, and my roommates were mugged at gunpoint within that radius. Apparently Savannah was worse ten and twenty years ago, but there's still a lot of low-income housing and projects that contribute to crime, so it isn't smart to walk around by yourself when it's dark -- regardless whether you're male or female. Again, this is where a bike or car becomes handy; be sure to secure these, too -- bicycle thefts are superfluous, and it isn't uncommon to see your stolen bike being ridden down the street. Since there isn't a real campus, sometimes you have to endure the ghetto areas to get where you need to be. I get cat-called all the time when I'm on my bicycle, which is unnerving, but all you can do is pedal on. Of course, this is more of a city issue, not a college one. I was going to say that the biggest disappointment I can find is in the student body, but it has to be realized that time weeds out the best and promising from the terrible and lazy. I've met a lot of people who I've questioned, "How the hell did you get here?" but I've met just as many who deserve to be here -- or somewhere even better. It's true what they say about SCAD being one of the biggest hipster schools, it's almost disgusting. But 'hipster' is such a loose term these days that I've been called as such, to which I respond, "What? That doesn't make any sense." But if you mean hipsters that dress eclectically, and fill any void of personality with PBR, we've got plenty of those. Some of them are nice, some of them are dumb as a bag of hammers. I've spent probably an hour reflecting on all this, so here is my close. If I was offered an opportunity to go somewhere else, I can't say that I wouldn't consider it. I mean, I have thought about transferring a few times to be closer to home (I'm from the West Coast), but the reasons I haven't mostly have to do with the time and money I've invested here already, and also the networking and career opportunities SCAD has to offer. Countless companies and big name artists come through SCAD to recruit and/or look at portfolios, and it's worth just to be around for the feedback. I know I complained about unhelpful professors, but that's mainly in the classroom setting. If you simply come in and ask to have your work critique, they will certainly let you know what you need to improve on. I'm barely tapping into my major this year, but I'm learning a lot about animation, character design, and stuff I never thought about before (right now I'm trying to figure out how to get better at design as a whole). So from what I'm hoping is that my Junior and Senior years will be the best in terms of academics, social scene, and confidence. If there's a school that's cheaper and offers this much or more, then I'd probably take it. Otherwise, I'll stick it out and see what next fall brings.
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