StudentsReview :: Kansas City Art Institute - Extra Detail about the Comment
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Kansas City Art Institute

How this student rated the school
Educational QualityD- Faculty AccessibilityD
Useful SchoolworkC Excess CompetitionB+
Academic SuccessC Creativity/ InnovationD-
Individual ValueB University Resource UseF
Campus Aesthetics/ BeautyA FriendlinessB+
Campus MaintenanceC+ Social LifeF
Surrounding CityC Extra CurricularsF
Describes the student body as:
Friendly, Arrogant, Broken Spirit, Closeminded

Describes the faculty as:
Arrogant, Condescending

id='quarter' class='snapshot' style='color: #970016; line-height:80px';float:left;
Quite Bright
Lowest Rating
University Resource Use
Highest Rating
Campus Aesthetics/ Beauty
He cares more about Creativity/ Innovation than the average student.
Date: Jan 03 2008
Major: Video/Media (This Major's Salary over time)
I decided on the Art Institute primarily based on the campus visits and the facilities I was shown, which included painting and sculpture primarily, as well as foundations and Ceramics, you know, the departments they WANT to show off. My foundations year was absolutely stellar, the teacher I had was tough and demanding and treated me like an individual and actually helped me with a couple of family crises I was enduring during that year. I had decided to pursue Illustration with a plan to transfer into Interdisciplinary before they dropped the Illustration Department (much to the chagrin of well, everyone who was planning on going into said department.) But I shrugged it off, because I was going to go into my second choice department, New Media, or as it became known, Digital Filmmaking.

Let me put out the good points about the school before I get any further. The Campus is very nice and the facilities for painting and sculpture and ceramics are great. Some departments are absolutely amazing as seen from an outsider and I dont doubt they are great place to go. The faculty, when you can get a hold of them, are very helpful and responsive. The campus is well located and central to many things in Downtown Kansas City. Some artwork is very experimental in nature and really does try to push the limits of what can or can't be done.

Now, onto the bad:

The faculty are a joke. They really are (at least in digital filmmaking) Some of them are NEVER in their offices and getting ahold of them via email is next to impossible, I often have to wait days for a response. The head of Digital Filmmaking Track has turned a department that could have been a great expiremental media department into a bad film department with no film facilities whatsoever. I question his skill with software that is required for video editing. He pushes his own aesthetic to the detriment of anything else and he has, on many occasions, taken equipment from the media center without checking it out or even telling anyone for weeks on end. Another faculty member does not even challenge students to hold themselves to a high standard. He will validate a video or photo that is complete shit and villify anyone who disagrees. He also holds an unrealistic schedule in his classes and ends up having to cut everything at the end of the semester due to lack of time.

The department has gone through a major paradigm shift recently and favors more cinematic film and squashes experimental video. This department used to be a mesh of multiple medias where one student could work on experimental animation, another could work on database video, another on audio, etc. Now, because of the main teacher, that is all gone or disappearing. The Most expiremental students are Seniors, the Juniors are sort of on the fence, but the sophomores are 100% cinema driven (though some fight against the teacher's whims, which I applaud.) Two students were convinced to come into this department based on complete lies (that we had a full experimental video suite, we don't.)

The workload in our department is inconsistent and the grading is erratic and based entirely on a) what the teacher thinks of the aesthetic of your work or b) if you have the easy going teacher, you'll get an A anyway. The assignments dealing with concept are far to vague and forced down the throats of students who are still trying to learn the software, and while this isn't a technical school, some students do need help with the software, help which is not available through the faculty.

The facilities were nonexistent until this semester, and they're still terrible. I have a laptop that I do my video work on. My $2000 laptop out rendered a $10,000 Mac Pro. I want to repeat that. my LAPTOP out rendered a computer built SPECIFICALLY TO RENDER VIDEO!!!!! The computers are run by a tech crew that doesn't know dick about video or how to run a server. The computers in our lab can not run dvds, software constantly crashes or doesn't work at all because students lack admin rights, software is missing key plug ins. There is no good HD workflow, cameras are constantly broken or being mishandled, we recently got 3 brand new 1080p monitors and we aren't allowed to use them because the department chair wants to permanently mount htem on the wall instead of making them available to students.

The school is also not well protected, people are assaulted regularly, though they are trying to figure out. The student body in general is a mix of rich kids who have everything handed to them or disillusioned students like myself who feel generally stuck.

I would suggest skipping this school entirely. My list of greivances isn't even halfway over. The administration will lie to you completely to get you to come here and then, unless you're a painter, sculptor, or ceramacist, end up in a department with bad facilities and fickle teachers. Go somewhere else and thank me later.

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