Capilano University’s animation programs have just been listed as one of the top 25 schools to hire from by Animation Magazine, the major trade publication for the industry.

The honour recognizes the long history of success of the School of Motion Picture Arts’ animation programs, notes Don Perro, coordinator of the 2D Animation program. “The local and international animation industries recognize the quality of our graduates,” he says.

The U.S.-based publication hosts an annual design competition (known as Pitch Party) in which Capilano students routinely place in the top three entrants. Because they often beat out entries from professional animation artists, Animation Magazine has been aware of Capilano University students for a number of years.

“We’ve never really advertised, preferring to have the students’ work speak for the quality of the program,” Don says.

Students from all three animation programs—2D Animation (formerly Commercial Animation), 3D Animation for Film and Games and Digital Visual Effects—are in high demand in both the local and international animation industry.

In fact, the day new graduate Rhianna (Rhi) Williams completed the 2D Animation program at Capilano University, she had offers to join the ranks of no less than five professional animation studios. With so many offers, Rhi ultimately chose a position with Bardel Entertainment in Vancouver, where she now creates storyboards for DreamWorks’ “Puss in Boots” TV series.

Rhi’s story is not unusual. In fact, the industry is snapping up Cap U animation grads, who currently work for major studios like ‪Disney and DreamWorks on projects such as Frozen, Big Hero 6, Sony’s Hotel Transylvania 2, and Disney’s ZOOTOPIA. “It’s great to know that graduates from our class are in such high demand,” Rhi says.

The reason for this? “We get very talented people and teach them to draw, design and animate better than almost all other schools,” says Craig Simmons, coordinator of the 3D Animation for Film and Games Program.

He also points out that the school is one of the few that uses industry standard technology such as the Cintiq drawing board with TV Paint software. However, he adds, the technology is not the emphasis, but rather a support device. “We get our students to draw all the time,” he says. “We build their artistic skills, which is why the industry keeps coming back for our students.”

Demand for these programs continues to rise. This September, the 2D Animation program will double in size. A second cohort of students will be accepted, meaning that an additional 24 students will be able to complete the two-year diploma.

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Learn more about Capilano University’s Animation programs.

Submitted by Marketing & Communications

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