Otis College of Art and Design Top Questions

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

Edward

In choosing your college research the universities you are interested in so you can make an informed choice. Once you are at your chosen school invest your maximum effort into each project. Strive for excellence, never being satisfied with ?good enough,? but don?t stress yourself out seeking impossible levels of perfection. Also take advantage of the unique opportunities (guest lectures, workshops, internships, etc.) provided at or through your school.

Robyn

Over time, I have gained insight into what is really important about the "college years" of life. I attend a private art college that is only one-fourth the size of a standard city block, and have compared this to the experiences of my peers at some of the largest universities in the country to find that the most important factor in finding the right school is growth. First, educational growth : What do you want to learn and what are the methods in which you want to learn it? State colleges tend to have very common majors for a conventional job market versus smaller schools for more specific or obscure majors. One is not superior to the other and your decision should consider both options. Investigate the methods of teaching within that school. Is there community involvement? Are certain labs or equiptment facilities available? Second, personal growth: How do you want to develop as a person during these years? This depends on many factors from the school's location to what extracurricular activities are available. In the end, find a place that alows you to be comfortable, while providing for you the tools necessary to gain a great education.

Anina

The most important question in the college application process isn?t the one that requires a 250 word limit, or a quote from a famous author or poet, it is the question the applicant must sincerely answer in the secret corners of his or her mind, ?Why do I want to go to college??. My advice to prospective undergraduates is first, to simply answer this question truthfully, and following, to apply their answer to the college that will best serve their reason or purpose. Choose the one that will help you fulfill your ultimate dream of perhaps becoming the next Einstein, or Van Gogh. Although it is a wise decision to weigh the differences and propositions of each institution, it is equally important to follow your heart. You must feel at ease in the campus and surroundings because you will be spending four or more years of your life within its grounds. Ultimately, one should never be discouraged by financial hindrances within the college process because there will always be a way around and out of these difficulties. College is all about willpower and making wise decisions, invest in a school that will guarantee you success in the future.

Wendy

My advice for students is to go to the one that suits the type of career they want. Go to a school that will have people with similar goals, to help each other surpass difficult circumstances, and motivate each other. Having people truly understand what you're going through because they're going through the same in college is the best way to not only talk through problems you have, but also a way to make friends and possible career partners for life. For parents trying to help their kids find the college for them: direct him/her to the path where he/she may find the perfect school. Don't force them into one specific college YOU chose. Comfort them if they are stressed, and listen to what your kids have to say. Students should feel comfortable going to the college they are attending so they can have a positive outlook on their first day of school, and the years they will be attending it. To get the best college experience, be positive and open-minded, and Interact with social activities. The friends you make there may help out with something you may need while in college or afterwards.

Khue

From my personal experience I believe that when it comes to deciding the best college for your child there are many aspects you should consider. The first thing as a parent, I think you should consider your child?s needs and not what you think is best for him or her. You don?t want to pressure your child into a career that he or she in not passionate about, because ultimately in the end you are not considering your child?s happiness. If your child is undecided take the time to help him or her discover different careers they might enjoy and give them an idea of what their future might entails. Secondly, take time to visit different colleges that specialize in that specific majors, but also one that provides a wide range of academic majors. Also consider the extracurricular possibilities, the classroom size, the facilities, and the safety of living environment. I am sure that this process is hard for any parent, and even when you have carefully researched everything, there might be obstacles that they may encounter. I believe the most important thing to keep in mind is to have an open mind and be supportive.

Jessica

The most imortant thing anyone can do when looking for a college, ask as many people you can about everything that is on mind about the school. Even if it seems like a stupid question, keep in mind that there is no such thing as a stupid question. Also, if the major that your planning to go into requires certain facilities or equipment, then go visit the school and make sure they has a working facility or lab. For example, I've met student who have gone to a school for sculpting and pottery just to find out after they get to their new school that all the kelms and ovens for the pottery classes have been donated to another school and the pottery work space has been converted into a cafe area. And it is just too fustrating to deal with something like that espicially if your paying for school out of your own pocket. The right tools are everything, I know the only reason I'm at my school and not some other one is because of the computer labs and equipment in the woodshop and I'm so glad I researched all that before applying to schools.

Hyeyoun

if ever your sons or daughters want to major in fashion design, be sure they really have passion to do it, because school work loads are extreme and we almost don't have social life while attending the school.

Brittnee

I believe that the best way to find a college that will suit your needs or your child?s needs the best is to first know what the student wants to pursue career wise. In my case, I attended an art high school, so I already knew that I wanted to attend an art college. Then, I thought about all of the art courses I had taken and decided to pursue a degree in Fashion Design since I enjoyed and felt that I had the most talent in that particular art field. Once I knew what I wanted to major in, finding the best colleges, with the best fashion curriculum was easy. After my research, I was left with three options, Otis College of Art and Design in California, Parsons Art School in New York, or Commercial Saint Martins in England. In the end, I chose to attend Otis College, primarily because it had the smallest campus, which I felt was a more conducive learning environment for my quiet personality, and was also close to home, so that I could study in a familiar environment instead of having to tackle a new home and a new school simultaneously.

Lizabeth

Always research first-hand. Student life is almost always the strongest deciding factor in choosing a school. It is where life-long friends and career connections are made. We are always told, ?These are the people you will be working with in your future.? So don?t be shy and get to know everyone. By building a strong support group of friends, and you will always land on your feet. Never think of your classmates as competition, they?re your main support. Also never let money dictate your future. If you really want to attend a college that is expensive, but worth the education, do it. Money is not worth unhappiness if someone can?t do what he loves. My family does what little they can, but my housing, supplies, and most of my tuition I personally take out loans for. Am I freaked out about being able to pay them off? Yes. But I know that my school is preparing me to have the well paying career I need and will deserve. So when deciding your college, make sure it is a school with ample help in career services, and one that emphasizes an active and thriving student body.

Jaimie

The advice I would give to parents and/or students about finding the right college to attend is to narrow your search by keeping in mind what you want to major in or what career(s) you might be interested in. Research on schools that offer the program of your choice, find out everything you can about them. Once you have narrowed your search, I believe the most important thing is to physically go to the school and talk to faculty and more importantly the students that attend the college. By doing this you will get first hand experience of what to expect if and when you attend the school and it allows you to make a better choice in finding out which is the best school/program for you. This also allows you to make more of your college experience, find schools that offer activites, other than your major, that you are passionate about. When it comes to making the best of your college experience, atleast in my school, for me, I beleive the most important thing is to take advantage of the facutly and professionals in the field that we get to work with and learn from.

Emma

The most important factor when finding the right college is that the school has a strong program for your desired major. Visit the school and decide if the students and faculty feel right for you. Take in the local area and decide if it could be home. Apply for financial aid and scholarships. The more you apply, the more you get! It is important to follow your passion. This is the only way to be dedicated to your studies. If you love what you are studying, you will put extra energy into your assignments. The extra care will create stronger work and better opportunities for your future. This leads to not just a job, but to a career that will fulfill your life. Time management is key to making the most of your college experience. You have to plan time for not only work, but fun too! Hang out with friends and exercise to let off steam. Take advantage of cultural events in your neighborhood. Make study groups with peers so homework can be fun. Never forget your family, they're always a call away for comfort. And ultimately, remember that the only person you need to satisfy is yourself.

Olga

My advice for parents and students is to do deep reserch about the college, it's admition order, tuition and finansial aid. Also, visit the chosen college, either by an organized or informal tour, and see for yourself .

Candy

It is so important to visit the colleges you are interested in...especially if you can while the school is in session. You need to be logical about things, like the cost of tuition, but also moreso job placement percentage. The thing is, you just have to feel good there. I love my school because I feel more at home here than anywhere else. The small size is what appealed to me, and students need to take these things into account. You have to be logical, but at the same time you have to go for what you want. When I first visited Otis I left the college crying because I knew I couldn't afford it. But I felt like it was meant to be, I was able to get the loans I needed. And now that the economy is in the dumps it's getting harder and harder for me to say, but I know I was meant to be here and I trust that things will just work out. You have to say to yourself "Hey, is this school worith it?" A good education always is.

Adria

There is no "perfect" college, or perfect college experience. When I was searching for Colleges, I put too much emphasis on finding the "perfect" place and thus built up my expectations to an unreasonably high level. When my expectations were inevitably unmet, I transferred. Luckily, upon transferring, I realized the most important consideration to make is that concerning your raw intentions, your true passion. Trust in those true personal goals, not in finding the "perfect" college to house all of your potential, as that potential is in you specifically and always has been! College is just the next step, and one of many!

L.

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sam

Find the best college for your field of study (or best near your home) and treat it like a job...

Steve

If you know what you want to do in life try it out in a community college first to see if it really does feel right. That way if you decide to really waste a lot of money you don't waste it because you end it up hating it. If you don't know what you are good at do the same and try out thing that have some experience required. Live it while you are young or else you will hate it when you get older.

Linnette

If I were to give advice to parents and/or students about finding the right college, I would say to find a school that; is safe, is academically challenging, has a supportive environment, and is fairly well-known in the field that he or she is going into. For example, I do believe that Otis College of Art and Design is a perfect example of this type of school. As a student, I am happy with the choice I made because this grueling program enabled me to believe that I can do anything I set my mind to. The first year into my program I was able to gain an internship at a top corporate company and the sense of accomplishment that I felt was like nothing I ever felt. Otis has given me something to believe in. Otis has given myself to believe in. Before coming to this school I didn't think I could do it. I was wrong. Furthermore, if i was to tell parents and/or students about making the most of your college experience, I would say get involved. Do as much as you can because college are the best times of your life.

Karen

you have to know what you want in college: your major. This is the first thing. Then you go ahead and find colleges that fit best for your major. The second thing that I think is important is environment. A good environment leads to better learning. You have to know what kind of environment will help you focus and makes you feel relaxed. If you choose the best school in New York but you cannot get along with the fast- paste lifestyle there, you will not study well and live well, it might be so much better off to choose a normal school but with better living environment. Success is not about choosing the best schools, it is about how much you know about yourself and choose the best school out of your needs.

Da

I would recommend that find a school where leads you to your best interest or dream and also you can enjoy of doing it.

Judith

Make sure you know the area where you are moving to and that you are comfortable with the size of the school you are attending. Be as involved as school as possible and make the most out of each school event.

Justine

Visit the campus and you will probably know right away.

Celina

In choosing a school always consider that visiting isn't the same as living somewhere. Distance and being too different, not aesthically, can be the two biggest challenges. Always find somewhere that feels you, often its what's similar to what you grew up with, but if its too different or very far away from home, do make the decision cautiously. Talking to a student or a resident is always helpful, often they have advice about school and activities around the area. They can give you a better perspective about the overall mood and quality of the campus you're considering.

Mindy

Plan ahead, fill out your FAFSA, apply for teh Cal grants, and save money by getting a part-time job or IRA

Helen

I guess parents need to be extremely open about art and need to know the priority in terms of living. Especially art is so much different than any other subjects. That students have to dedicate most of their times in school campus doing their work.

Nicole

Visit the colleges you are interested more than once, speak with a few random students who attend the school. Check out all the facilities: library, labs and shops. Ask about the internship and job placement rate. Research the instructors, this can be done online, eg. www.ratemyprofessors.com. If the student has an idea of which career path he/she would like to take, get the opinion from various professional associations. Take a weekend evening class at the school if available, to test the waters. Finally, don't feel like you're locked into staying at one school. If things aren't working out at the school of your choice, apply somewhere else!

Darya

For the student, know what you want to get out of your college experience, what do you really want to learn and take with you after you graduate. Plan your finances and save for the future. Research your intended major so that you know what you're getting yourself into, finding out ahead of time if this is what you really want for your future. Rather then waisting your time and money try to find as much information as possible; research. For parents, be supportive of your child's decision, save extra money for them during college attendance and after graduation (just in case!). Encourage their decision and research the colleges they choose and find out costs to start saving. A little goes a long way!

Roxanne

Make sure that the college you want has your major and throughly research each of your choices.

Daniel

Deffinitely be sure about the college that you are applying to. Choosing the right school is very important, see as many campuses as possible before making your choice. A good social network at your school is VITAL, make sure you see yourself meeting and connecting with the students.

Jay

Higher Education allows our children to flourish and discover new worlds never before availible to them. Parents must instil an ethic of hard work and hold education as a virtue so that our children and our children's children can have a brighter tomorrow because education blossoms understanding. Dedication and hard work coupled with understanding can only manifest harmonious coexistence of all. Maybe then those dreamers like John Lenon and Dr. King Jr. can look upon the world from above and hold their heads high. But what was right for previous generations may not necesarily be right for our children now. We must not force our own hopes and dreams on our children. Through their own educational discoveries, they will find their own path, a path less traveled. They just need a little guiding light, a helping hand and most of all they need our love.

Grace

Just have lots of experience in differnt field before you apply to college. Like some parents wants their child to be a lawer, or doctor, parents need to stop thinking selfish. because they might go to UCLA,..but if it's not their interest they would either waste their money and time and drop out later or after they graduate they won't feel happy with their job.Just don't push your kid too hard, let them find what they are interested just support their dreams. i never game up my dream,because of the support by my mother. i applied to Otis College of art and Design, my desire of attending Otis college was so big that that was the Only school i applied to and luckly I was accepted. I say once you get in to college students shouldn't waste their time on part-time jobs, because if you are student, that's your job and you need to focuse being the best student. take out loans, or pay back your parents later on. And most important thing is that find a good friend, it changed who you are by who your friends are.

Andrew

I would advice them to research the school in early hand before entering the college. It would be nice to visit the school that the student wishes to attend before applying for that college to feel and see if the college is right for the students. There are many convenient websites for most colleges, and there are also websites such as Campus Discovery.com that talks and rates the school on what their best are, and what their worst are. The most important thing in my opinion, is that it is the students? will to choose where they want to go to pursue their dream/goal, because they are the ones that will choose what they want to become after graduating their college that they chose. To make the most of the college experience, the students should know the diversity of race and also the activities that are available to them. Since most of American universities are not all about studying, there are fraternities, and sororities, sports, extra curricular activities, clubs, etc. that the students can experience and enjoy through out their college years. In addition, students should be open to other ethnicities and socialize to make a better community.

Michelle

I would want to advise the parents to fully support their children on where their child wants to go to school and what they want to study. Many kids these days are swayed and influenced by their parents in what they want to become when they grow up. Especially because most parents have the mindset of wanting their kids to become a doctor or a lawyer, children, many times, do not have the freedom and own free will to truly experience what they really want to be. No matter what college a student decides to go to and what career path they want to take, I think the most important thing is the whole path and experience of college life itself. I have realized that the journey that life takes you on during college is truly the inspiration and motivation to find what one really wants to be in the future and why one should want to succeed. Other variables such as reputation, location, money, friends, should not be what makes a student choose the right college, but just the openness to embrace whatever your future has planned to throw at you.

Nicole

The most important thing about selecting a college is too find a place where the student is truly going to feel comfortable at. They are going to be spending at least two years here, if not four or even six. From personal experience, it is important to visit the colleges. By visiting the college one can tell the true atmosphere of the college and speak with the students of that college, they know more about what the college is really like than what the handbooks or websites will say. Also, seeing the campus itself and its native surroundings can also help to influence the student?s mind. Make sure to ask questions. Have no fear. By asking questions the answers that you need to know can be found. Most of all get educated. Before even beginning to look at a campus or a selection of schools, know the majors that you are interested in financial aid issues, living conditions, and the career outlook for students of that school. By knowing these facts, a student can compare his needs to what that school offers. First hand experience is the best way to look at a school.

Clara

Students should be encouraged to choose collage that would most benefit the student's future. They are often pressured by their parents to choose colleges according to its recognition in society. Instead of choosing colleges that are famous and recognized in society, students should research what college excels in what departments and should apply to colleges that meets requirements for their needs and interests. Also, participating and being active in school activities are great. It would benefit the student at least but only under the circumstance of keeping up with good grade. Highschool is extremely important in a sense for student to develop his or her time management skills. Time managements is crucial for students to develop if they want to keep their good grade along with their current social life. Unless they learn how to use time wisely and organize they will have hard time because works will stack up and they will crash resulting in either bad school grade or sacrificing social life.

E.G.

Pick a subject that interests you and see that it's well met at the institution. Then look at how easy it is to transfer into another major, and transfer classes from Junior and other Colleges. Look for accesible teachers and small classes. Feel the school emotionaly and like the student body for the most part.

Charlene

The advice I would give to the parents regarding college and their children's college experience is to have the understanding that their children are going to college, not them. Most parents tend to push their kids to go to the best college for the best education. Students however, should go to college according to their major. If one would like to major in Interior Design, one should not go to Harvard. The college that best fits your major is the one that a you should apply for. Additionally, the area and the environment of the college matters as well. If a particular school is located in a place where a student can even learn from the location and be more mature and independent, that school should be put into consideration as well. One advice to some students would be to grow up. You are now going to college, therefore, you should do some research on which college you wish to go. Look beyond what college your friends are going to and what college throws the best parties because in the end, all of that does not matter except who you are and where you stand in society.

Tania

The number one piece of advice I can give parents and students is to find the right college is to go where your passion is, follow whatever makes you happy because no matter what anyone says, the college you choose is the decision that will mark the rest of your life and the choice you make should be based on your own ambition and drive, whatever job it is that you feel comfortable doing every single day is how you should choose the right college for you. I chose college as my first choice because I knew exactly what it was that made me happy, and was sure that Otis saw what I love to do in my portfolio when they accepted me and decided to invite me to join the Otis family. I read a quote that made me realize I had chosen the right place for me, ?Be yourself. Above all, let who you are, what you are, what you believe, shine through every sentence you write, every piece you finish.?

nathalie

Do lots of research before you commit to attending.

Hyerin

must visit the campus before you decide. make appointment with a counselor of that school you want to go and get advice. most likely they're very kind and honest, they'll help you for sure. if you know any, contact current students or graduates of that school and ask about actual campus life and classes, faculties, etc.

Alexander

Make sure you check every college out in person and the student and parents have a clear connection of what the student wants out of the college.

Carlos

i would say to parents that going to college should be the decision of the student and therefor the student should make the choice of what school to go to and what field they wish to study. I think it's the parents job to support their child in whatever they wish to do.

Junglang

you won't know if you're at the right college until you experience it.

Rachael

There is no exact science to figuring out which college suits one potential student best. It is the student's attitude, drive, and personality that makes their situation the best it can be. Of course, it does help to attend a respected and accomodating college that drives a student in his/her chosen carreer path, but a student must be reliant on his/her own determination to attain the knowledge, experience, and memories that stay with him/her throughout his/her life. Positivity and determination are definitely key to a successful college life that not only includes a good education, but a good batch of fun memories and friends to leave with. New students should know that fear is common, but that should not prohibit them from opening up to new people, ideas, outlooks. Never compare yourself with another person, every student is unique from the way they study to the way they take an exam and handle pressure. Most importantly, let your passions drive you, mistakes are ok because you would never learn a thing without them, but passion is key to attaining your own personal success and happiness.

Ani

Fist make sure they can afford the college or the university they want to attend. Research about the college and make sure the college or university they want to attend provides every needs they are looking for. Also visit the campus, take a tour and talk to the students that are attending that college or univesity about the school. Another thing that is important, is to visit different colleges and pick the one that is the best for them.

patricia

do research about the school and talk to students from that campus.

Judy

You must first know what you want and where you can get it and do the best you can to work for it! Go for it, you can do it!

Art

Before you choose a college try and be as sure as you can about your career choice. Then take that choice and do as much research as you can on as many colleges as you can. Also try to visit the campus you want to go to at various times and get opinions about the school from students that are there. A college campus should not be a larger version of your High School but a pre-profesional environment that allows for career and personal growth with only positive intent. Learn, grow, have fun, and enjoy every second because it passes way too fast.

Stella

Go and visit the school and talk to the students that currently go there.

Charles

Visit as many colleges as possible and make sure it is the right fit for you. sitting in on classes helps a lot.

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