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Researching ad schools in US, UK and Canada


I am an English Language Teaching graduate from a university in Turkey. I realized, though late, that i would like to be in advertising business as a copywriter. This is something I really want very much. On the other hand I have no education related to advertising. I now believe I need some intensive education over the theory and practice. I have been searching for schools but it’s so difficult to decide where to go. I now live in Turkey but am already ready to leave home for as long as two years for the education. Will you please give me some advice about some nice schools that will really help me be a well qualified copywriter? The school could be in America, in Canada or in Europe. I feel that your experience in advertising will help me choose a route in my education plan. Thank you very much in advance.

intro Researching ad schools in US, UK and CanadaLucky you. We’d love to go back to school although we’re not sure we’d get in. The entrance criteria can be killer.

So where would we suggest you go? It depends on what type of education you want. In the U.S. schools seem to break down into two categories. There are universities that grant advertising degrees and post-graduate portfolio schools that Mary Warlick, executive director of the One Club, calls ‘finishing schools’. The first option is more academic, the second more practical. Both have value. Universities to consider in the U.S. are Syracuse University, University of Texas- Austin, and our personal favourite, Virginia Commonwealth Adcenter in Richmond Va. It turns out wildly talented. capable people who are educated in their disciplines, and the industry as a whole. Terrific portfolio schools include The Miami Ad School, which has just opened a campus in Germany, Art Center College of Design, and the Portfolio Center.

The top UK schools include West Herts College, Buckinghamshire Chilterns University College, Central St Martin’s College of Art and Design.

There are few schools in Canada. They aren’t the caliber of the US and UK schools yet, but they’re probably way more affordable and good talent does come out of them.

So, the best schools are in the US and UK. Regardless of country, the courses seem to range from 1-3 years in length. It depends what you’re looking for. And there are many more good schools than the ones we’ve listed. But you haven’t got all day.

Are you confused yet? We are. There are just too many options. Don’t know if you saw a recent issue of Campaign magazine that included a separate little student mag. It’s June 27, 2003. I’d try to scare it up. A lot of this stuff is explained there in detail.

Good luck. We wouldn’t want to have to do the work to make your choice but we’d love to be in your sneakers.

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About Jancy

'Jancy' is Janet Kestin and Nancy Vonk, Co-Founders of Swim, a unique “creative leadership training lab for advertising creatives and marketers.” Prior to Swim, Jancy was globally renowned as the Co-Chief Creative Officers of Ogilvy & Mather Toronto, a position they held for thirteen of the twenty years they were a creative duo at the agency. Over the years they've racked up Cannes Lions, Clios, One Show pencils and CA credits, and have lead their shop to two Cannes Lions Grand Prix and a Grand Clio. They've judged CA, Cannes, D&AD, the One Show, the Clios and other prestigious award shows. Creativity named them two of the top 50 creative people of 2008. Known for their outspoken, no-bullshit style and a passion for mentoring juniors, they're ready to give you advice if you're ready to take it.

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