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The Art Institutes Reviews

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Student & Graduate Reviews (82)

4 out of 5
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Degree: Arts, Entertainment, and Media Management, Other
Graduation Year: 2007

The place itself felt rather executive but the faculty were helpful. The location strangely fit every major into one building, had id cards for classrooms, and at least two security guards on grounds at all times. The Orange County one by comparison separates the cooking classes from the computer related ones, has less strict security measures and a relaxed atmosphere from the staff. Although I only visited the latter a few times, I felt safe at both schools. Curriculum is surprisingly easy to attend when it's something you like. You can always arrange an alternative class if you want a different type of focus too.

2 out of 5
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Degree: Graphic Design
Graduation Year: 2009

Not worth the money that was spent on it. Private collages are a scam. I'm so far in debt I can't imagine life without repaying my loans. Most of what I've learned has been in the field.

1 out of 5
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Degree: Baking and Pastry Arts/Baker/Pastry Chef
Graduation Year: 2013

PLEASE DO NOT ATTEND THIS SCHOOL! I did not graduate this awful school. I luckily realized what a scam it was and ran for the hills by my third quarter. This school has put me through hell and back. When I first contacted the school to learn more about their culinary program I was very pleased by how quick they were to respond to all my questions. They went above and beyond to make me think this school would be the best thing that would ever happen to me, and even lied about what classes I would be taking. I guess it is kind of my fault, I should have asked to see proof of what my required classes would be. Long story short, when I arrived to the school for my first day, I ended up in my dorm room in tears because of my schedule. ALL THE CLASSES WERE CLASSES MY ADVISOR TOLD ME I WOULD NOT HAVE TO TAKE. This school needs to burn to the ground. I feel sorry for anyone that has attended this school. OH and the horrible, I MEAN HORRIBLE so called teachers. This school is a scam!!!! Went to college for baking and pastry for 4 months and now $15,000 in debt.

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1 out of 5
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Degree: Fashion Merchandising
Graduation Year: 2006

I would not recommend this school. I did not understand what type of school it was when I enrolled. It is a for-profit school that cares little about actual education or preparing you for an actual job after graduation.

5 out of 5
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Degree: Culinary Arts
Graduation Year: 2016

First let me say I am not sure where these other students went to school but A.I. of Sacramento is not even close to these experiences. A little back ground on myself. I have attended training schools that were a sham. Lost money, time and had to do training all over again. We had a restaurant. I am getting my degree to back my experience. I am not a veteran however have friends who are and they attend AI with me. You get what you put into it. That being said all of my course labs or core classes have been challenging. I generally am a high achiever and put forth 150%. Life is too short to not take your education and time seriously. I have learned things I did not know, (things I I didnt know I didnt know) You can NOT get the mentor-ship and experience of working hands on with an experienced instructor from youtube ( i tried). I have learned so many fabulous things from A.I. Sacramento. We work with top ingredients daily. The instructors are whole heartily available to you if you ask. The department staff is wonderful about providing support and resources. The school website and campus resources are amazing. An advisory member calls you a few times a semester to "check in". The school will help you build a resume, they have job fairs all the time and will offer one on one counseling with financial aid or any other staff anytime.That includes department heads and even the Dean. I understand that a technical college is more expensive than a community college but with AI I feel like I am truly getting what I pay for. Lastly on a personal note after reading some of these remarks, I am grateful for the support and friends I have made. I am glad to have another chance to go back to school and start another new chapter in my life.( with the help of AI) .....To those students that I see everyday that are "wasting" their time and money you stick out. They show up late, miss class and don't do their assignments. Like a high school student being made to do something with their life and their parents are paying for them to take Art Classes......... uggg I would trade you lives any day.

3 out of 5
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Degree: Arts, Entertainment, and Media Management, Other
Graduation Year: 2005

Diploma mill. They only cared about taking your money; most of the classes were subpar for what we were paying. Animation program was great, but all surrounding classes were generally poor and Career Services were really of no help after graduating. You only get out of this school what you put into it, and they ended up having an 80% drop out rate by the 4th quarter. Teachers helped with networking, and you take every opportunity offered, but ultimately you can learn the content taught for the primary major by yourself with a book and time. A lot of students came out too generalized to be hirable when the industry was looking for specialized artists.

3 out of 5
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Degree: Arts, Entertainment, and Media Management, Other
Graduation Year: 2005

Diploma mill. They only cared about taking your money; most of the classes were subpar for what we were paying. Animation program was great, but all surrounding classes were generally poor and Career Services were really of no help after graduating. You only get out of this school what you put into it, and they ended up having an 80% drop out rate by the 4th quarter. Teachers helped with networking, and you take every opportunity offered, but ultimately you can learn the content taught for the primary major by yourself with a book and time. A lot of students came out too generalized to be hirable when the industry was looking for specialized artists.

1 out of 5
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Degree: Art & Design
Graduation Year: 2015

Allow me to begin by saying I had such high hopes and went in with high motivation, excitement and honestly joy because I felt as an artist, I was going to be raised up in a place with like minded people. Wrong. My first class, the instructor couldn't pronounce the vocabulary words. One professor LOST my final and my final project and I fought for two months to have my grade readjusted, because they didn't believe me-and then he found my work. The attendance policy is terrible (you can miss two classes-the third you are dropped from the course). I was working full time and my work schedule was conflicting. The online classes are rough. So much work. And this is coming from a girl who is finishing her bachelors degree from WGU online at my own pace...18 months early. Oh yes and the best part- I did not take any financial aid because it was not needed and after paying everything in full I received an email from financial advising on a Friday at 4pm saying I had until 6 to pay 10k WITH ABSOLUTELY NO WARNING. And the email did not even go to me, it went to my father who's email they were not provided with. Not to mention the fact that I already have a job that is WAY above entry level and they refused to allow me to use that as my internship. So on top of working 50+hours a week and being in school full time I had to add an UNPAID internship to the mix? Needless to say it was an extremely frustrating time in my life and I started off SO excited. I am now at Western Govenors University and could not be more satisfied with the cost or the instruction.

1 out of 5
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Degree: Graphic Design
Graduation Year: 2009

Ohhh where to even begin. I attended the Art Institute of Pittsburgh from 2005 to 2009 and it's nothing but a diploma mill in college's clothing. There is absolutely nothing redeeming about AiP and I regret ever going there. The thing is I was under the impression that I was receiving a quality education, but then I later went on to attend grad school with a real art program and I got to see the difference. Let's look at the classes first. There are a LOT of unnecessary courses I had to take that were required for program completion. Design Fundamentals and Design Principles are the same thing with different names. Graphic design is not the same as illustration, yet there are four required illustration classes (five if you include Life Drawing). Design & Technology and Electronic Design are the same too. There are two portfolio classes. Two English classes and an Algebra class are requirements too. I'm sorry, I took college prep math and English so I *wouldn't* have to take them in college, but the Art Institutes do not accept credits from other schools. How nice for them. Oh, and once you hit your second year, you are required to take one elective each semester. Yup, the optional classes are required. So what are some of the career-building courses the graphic design bachelor's student can take? Special Projects I, II and III! Because that's not vague or anything. How about Textiles, Fundamentals of Audio and Architectural Drafting? Because those have everything to do with graphic design. In the midst of all these Xerox-copy classes and required electives, there was no InDesign class. I personally never learned InDesign until grad school, and even then I taught it to myself. I did have a Quark class, but the professor teaching it had never used the software before, so he also had no clue what he was doing. A Flash/web class is a program requirement, but I took Web Animation II thinking I'd be learning some new, more advanced techniques. Nope! My professor (Mr. Hassinger, I think) just told us that we had to make a portfolio site and show it to him at the end of the semester. He didn't teach us anything new at all, so I basically paid for an 11-week study hall. I think the Art Institutes like to artificially pad their programs in order to stretch them out into associate's and bachelor's programs. If you got rid of all the superfluous classes and just kept the real core courses, an AiP bachelor's program would only be a year and a half long, at best. An associate's program would be more like a certificate program, if it's lucky. Next, let's look at supplies. The school really shoves it down your throat when you enroll to buy their $500 starting kit and they make it sound like you'll be lost without it. I didn't even use half the stuff in it. Now, to be fair, I was in Game Art & Design for a year before I switched majors, but I think a year would be long enough to use everything in a *starting* kit. All the expensive textbooks in the kit were never used and I only used a few of the tools in said kit. The professors loved to tell you about their "required" textbooks that you HAD to buy for the class, and then we'd proceed to never once open those textbooks. My English II professor told us all we needed to buy the textbook for her class and we used it to read part of one poem the whole semester. Some professors would tell us to get the books on Amazon and that previous, cheaper versions would suffice, but others insisted on buying the most up-to-date version brand-new from the student store. I'd just go to the school library for any required reading or assignments and it saved me a lot of money. Housing was a real adventure too. About halfway through my academic career, AiP shuffled us to our new downtown dorms, which were really just a converted parking garage with concrete floors and non-opening windows. Yup, the windows did not open, so if someone burned their popcorn or pancakes or what-not, they couldn't open the windows and air the room out like a normal human being. They had to open the door and let the smoke into the hallway, which usually meant someone thought there was a fire and pulled the fire alarm. I'm pretty sure the fire department hated our guts having to respond to at least two false alarms every semester. In addition, the housing staff would specifically run fire drills at 11 or 12 at night to ensure that most/all of us were in the building to experience said drill. This was especially fun in the winter and people had to stand outside in 15-degree weather in their pajamas and bath towels. That BS took about 15-20 minutes, and then another half hour to get back to your room because the elevators and stairwells were packed with students. And if you refused to leave your room during a drill, you'd get fined. Also, don't be surprised if you get slapped with bills for damage to your room. When I was at the old dorms on the North Side, my roommates and I all got a bill for some unknown damage to the room. No explanation or details about it - just a $300 bill for each of us. Financial aid was special too. Like many teenagers in college, I didn't quite know how the whole financial aid thing worked out, but I trusted that my financial advisors did. They never explained things all that well and would just tell us to sign various documents in order to keep the aid going for the next year. Yeah, they don't tell you that you're selling your soul to Navient (formerly Sallie Mae) by taking out high-interest private loans that do not offer income-based repayment or forgiveness. Tuition is insane too. For a piddly bachelor's degree, it's $100,000. Career Services was worthless during enrollment and after graduation. I attempted to do freelance work through the school's career services and was told I had to be a student for, I think, six semesters before they'd even consider me for freelancing (I'd only been there maybe four at that point). So at the six-semester mark, I went back to the director of graphic design (who was a photography major, by the way) and showed her that I had already had my work published in two books since I started attending AiP. She still told me I wasn't qualified enough to freelance. If being a published freelance illustrator doesn't qualify you to do whatever piddly work AiP had to offer, then I don't know what does. While we're at it, let's talk about their job placement rates. The Art Institutes as a whole just love to brag about how 80 percent of their students find jobs after graduation, or how 9 in 10 students find careers. Wow, that sounds great, doesn't it? Yeah, it's a bunch of crap. AI is able to boast such a high job placement rate because they count ANY job, not just art-related ones. If you're working at Wendy's or FedEx or a car dealership after graduation, that gets counted in their job statistics. If they were honest about how many of their students secured employment in their fields of study, their job placement rates would be so abysmally low that nobody would enroll. I couldn't even get a job making coupons or page layouts for the local newspaper office with my AiP bachelor's degree. In closing, the best way to sum up my review of this place is DON'T GO HERE. To call it a horrible institution would be an understatement. I know the name sounds inviting and you might think, "Oh wow, a school dedicated entirely to art! I always see their ads on TV, so they must be good!" But don't believe it. An advertised school almost always means it's for-profit, and for-profit always means that it sucks. If you want to go to art school, do some research and find a real art program. You'll get a far better education for far less money than you would ever get at any Art Institute.

2 out of 5
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Degree: Video Game Design
Graduation Year: 2009

Most, if not everything I learned can be accessed online through tutorials, courses (free or paid), lectures, and 3d websites. If I could choose again I'd purchase online courses and learn through tutorials instead of attending school. The biggest aspect college offered was feedback from peers, which takes a while to get online, if you do get any at all.

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