I'm a junior at RISD. I'm extremely happy with my artistic growth, and excited to see how my friends and I will continue to develop as artists.
But I'm also MISERABLE. All the time.
How am I supposed to assign this school a certain number of stars? Here's my breakdown:
ARTISTIC DEVELOPMENT: 5/5
I have learned SO MUCH from my teachers and peers. I've been lucky enough to work alongside all these talented students...I've made so many great friends, and studied under so many great teachers. Like, don't get me wrong—I've had my fair share of bad professors. But the good ones more than bridged the gap for me.
STUDENT HEALTH: 1/5
I'm giving a 1 instead of a 0 because I love the RISD counseling department. The people at Counseling and Psychological Services kept me in school (and out of crisis). I don't know where I'd be without their help. Beside the counseling department? F**k this school's work culture. Everyone I know is stressed. My friends are struggling with depression, executive dysfunction, eating problems, dissociation...You don't get a break at this school. Weekends exist in name only. Unless you get a line of easy teachers, you'll find yourself sleep-deprived. When you do scrape up some down time, this school makes you feel guilty for relaxing. Freshman year is particularly destructive because the workload is DESIGNED TO BREAK YOU. Is the artistic development worth the psychological strain? Honestly, I don't know. I never had to deal with derealization before I entered RISD, but now it's part of my life. Thanks, freshman year stress!
I mean, I don't think this is the school's fault. Tuition rates are skyrocketing across the country. So I'll give the school some credit: I could be paying A LOT MORE than I am.
I come from a family that makes around $21,000 a year. In Montana, that's manageable. In Rhode Island—not so much. Thanks to a combination of scholarships and student loans, we're currently paying around $26,000 out of pocket a year. It's awful, and I don't know how we'll muster up the cash to get through another year—but again, it could be worse.
If you come from a poor family, you probably won't enjoy the additional material costs here. You'll have classes where teachers'll ask you to buy specific, expensive materials. THE GOOD NEWS: RISD offers a materials fund! You can submit an application, and the school can chose to fund your class project. Also, most of the teachers are willing to let you buy cheaper materials once you've explained your financial situation. They do care about their students.
SOCIAL LIFE/OUTSIDE ACTIVITIES: AHAHAHAHAHAHA
Like I said: You go to RISD, you get very little free time—unless you're the god of time management, and you can stay on top of a rigid schedule for 13 weeks without reprieve.
-Fantastic artistic progression
-Great teachers and students = lasting connections
-Your wallet will become an endless pit of darkness
-Throw your hobbies down a well because even when you do get time to do things you'll be plagued by guilt
If you want to ask a current student a question (I'm from the Illustration department, myself), feel free to email me at [email protected]
It is such a creative space. There is art everywhere. I was sitting at a bench close to the cafeteria planning out an assignment once during precollege, when I looked up at the giant tree above me and noticed that it had a colorful knitted cast around it, resembling a sweater of sorts. It is one of the special memories I hold from being there. I have never been more efficient nor has my work ethic ever been more consistent. The students are helpful and so interesting to hear about their lives before college. There is a new character to meet everyday. I cannot wait to start college in September and be in that space physically and mentally again.
It's a fantastic school with great connection for budding artists. Sometimes still stuck in the way of the "rich, elite" artist in some fields, but a new younger generation of both students and professors are starting to change this slightly. It is hard for a student who comes from a low class background to get used to, but connections and resources at RISD are, for the most part, worth the price. Social groups within RISD are vast and house a unique group of students, varying from very quiet and professional to spontaneous, outgoing, and a little reckless. All group activities on campus are recreational, with no major obligations unless you lead one, which is nice when studios get to be a handful.
I appreciate studying what I enjoy, and RISD has helped in finding me important connections related to my field of study (animation). While some of the students and faculty here are a hit or miss, I've made many positive connections. In terms of pursuing a career in the arts, I am quite happy about this school.
The academics and the teachers are extremely worth it. Classes will push you to the breaking point -- physically, mentally, and emotionally-- but you definitely learn something. The academics are rigorous: 3-day-per-week classes ranging from 8-10 hours, with homework due roughly every week (professors expect at least 12 hours of work gone into each piece), alongside 2 day-per-week liberal arts classes with essays due frequently, alongside weekly lectures. Students are no doubt stressed, sleep-deprived, and angsty, and the social scene revolves round the classes-- want to escape for a bit and talk about literally anything else other than how much wood you need to lasercut or how much charcoal you need to buy? Good luck. Also good luck on trying to leave RISD; Providence is built around this school. With it being such a small student body in such a small city, it gets suffocating; rumors spread, gossip starts. Be careful for some drama.
I think Rhode Island School of Design is an amazing creative and educational school. I am looking forward to going 2018.
Its a good art school, but foundation year is a little pointless and the work ethic needs to be there. There is a lot wrong with RISD, but one will find that out later as you enter the school. Don't worry too much about the academics as some of it is completely subjective, also just do your work and get into your major.
Risd as a whole is a creditable school. Yet they are stingy with their money creating an elitist environment. Facilities and academics are top notch but any chance they get they will get money out of you. In term of professional staff, the diversity is low. A (non statistic) guess would be that 80% of the staff is white.
RISD is a great place to grow as an artist and individual. Being around talented and driven peers helps inspire you to charge forward. It is truly amazing seeing amazing work all the time. In addition to the peers, teachers are helpful with encouraging you to form an opinion.
i think that it is rediculous that almost every student does drugs
and not to mention they barley learn for all that money i dont think it is worth it
i have a kid who wants to come here and i say fuck no
i would shut down this school
and whats the point of doing this school you cant do anyhting with art
Rhode Island School of design is an amazing university to attend. The school has a lot of history and it neighbors the Brown University. Rhode Island School of Design encompasses a diverse group of people. There are many view points influenced by different cultural backgrounds. This diversity lends itself to spectacular collaboration and amazing projects. It's always a privilege to be amongst so many diverse and creative people. This has allowed me to not only to grow as a person, but also as an artist.
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