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School of the Art Institute of Chicago

How this student rated the school
Educational QualityF Faculty AccessibilityB
Useful SchoolworkB Excess CompetitionB
Academic SuccessA Creativity/ InnovationB+
Individual ValueD+ University Resource UseD
Campus Aesthetics/ BeautyD FriendlinessC
Campus MaintenanceA Social LifeD+
Surrounding CityB Extra CurricularsC
Describes the student body as:
Friendly, Snooty, Closeminded

Describes the faculty as:
Friendly, Arrogant

Quite Bright
Lowest Rating
Educational Quality
Highest Rating
Academic Success
She cares more about Educational Quality than the average student.
Date: Jan 28 2015
Major: Video/Media (This Major's Salary over time)
I am writing this based on my experience at SAIC, to provide some young, aspiring artists some insights into the school that I didn't have before applying.

Let me make one thing clear: SAIC is a waste of time if you are interested in the commercial. If you want to get a job in the animation industry (working for major studios or even freelancing) go somewhere else. If you want to paint fantasy oil paintings or create a web comic, keep walking. This school is for the artist whose goal in life is… a little less clear (and whose parents have a lot of cash to throw at their child's post secondary education.)

SAIC is so focused on "the cutting edge" that the faculty and curriculum completely dismiss conventional practices. I came with the intention of learning 3D animation software programs to apply to a real-life job I plan on getting when I'm out of here. I have yet to be instructed on ANY software I have access to. Every technical skill I've learned has been on my own time. While conceptualization should be an important process in our art making, to continue pushing our personal boundaries, not everyone wants to be an abstract painter who also incorporates experimental sound, sculpture and light installations into all of their work in order to get a nod from faculty for being so "original." You can say that I'm just not looking at the curriculum with the right attitude, but the fact is this: I'm not really learning what I need to learn to have a career!

My 3D animation professor actually stated "I am anti-Pixar." So, if you also identify as anti commercial, anti establishment, anti anti anti anything, you just might fit right in. As for me, job outlook post graduation from this school is looking mighty bleak. Considering the hefty price tag ($100K) that comes along with my education from this establishment, not having a clear vision of job placement is unacceptable.

I plan on continuing my degree elsewhere, and I recommend anyone whose interest is even slightly commercial to consider doing the same. You know, unless you have $100,000 to spend just

testing college out,
because some of the Freshmen here have claimed that they are doing just that.

I would also highly recommend visiting the city for at least a week before you move here because it's definitely culture shock!

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School of the Art Institute of Chicago
School of the Art Institute of Chicago
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