at The Academy of Art College in San Francisco
- Why did you choose to pursue a graduate degree in the visual arts?
I wanted a professional degree for my work, and to be qualified to teach in public colleges.
- How did you decide that it was the right time for you to pursue one?
My children were old enough to let me go back to school.
- What are the most important factors that you considered when evaluating and choosing a graduate program in the visual arts?
Strong technical skills as a means to an end (not the end itselfâ€¦ i.e. fine arts painting is not just technique).
- Were there any important qualities about your school which made it stand out more than the others on your list of possibilities?
Immediacy (no long wait during the application process), and strength in the fundamentals (so I would learn the skills I needed to pursue my painting career)
- Given what you now know, what are tips could you provide for other students with regard to choosing and getting accepted into school?
Tour the schools, talk to current students, former students and graduates. Build your portfolio through undergrad, private or community programs. Trust yourself.
- How did you fund your graduate education? How available were scholarships and other forms of financial assistance?
Financial aid in the form of Stafford Loans. Loans are available.
- Exactly what is your graduate degree?
MFA is the terminal degree in fine arts.
- How does your school help its students to find jobs in the visual arts? What are your employment goals?
The school has a career center, and has held job fairs in the past.
- Tell us about your education at your graduate school. What did you like and dislike about it?
I have my degree and am very happy with it.
- How much difference does a good teacher make? Tell us about one good and one bad experience that you had.
Good teachers make a complete difference in the quality of education. I had one wonderful instructor who stayed interested in my work throughout my program. I also experienced a negative instructor who did not grasp the difference between undergraduate and graduate work processes.
- Please write and answer other questions you think of that would benefit prospective graduate students.
What do I really want?
That you have to answer for yourself, but if you are going to spend the money, know in your heart that you are doing the right thing. Trust yourself!
How do I get it?
Take every opportunity that moves you in the right direction (don't become distracted)
Graduate Program Profile: The Academy of Art College
Enrollment: Over 700
School Tuition (in-state/out-of-state): $550 per unit
Student/Faculty Ratio: 10/1
Graduation rate: N/A
Graduate degrees and programs offered in visual arts: Advertising, Computer Arts (New Media, 3D Modeling and Animation), Fine Art (Painting, Sculpture, Printmaking), Fashion (Design, Merchandising, Knitwear, Textiles), Graphic Design, Interior Architecture and Design, Industrial Design (Product, Toy, Transportation, Furniture), Illustration (Traditional, 2D Animation), Motion Pictures and Television, Photography
The mission of your graduate art school: It is the mission of the AAC to provide aspiring artist and designers with career preparation combined with academic excellence for the BFA, MFA and Certificate Programs in the areas of art band design.