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IHAVEANIDEA.ORG > ask jancy >  Expensive ad school vs. teaching myself?

Expensive ad school vs. teaching myself?

I just applied to VCU, it seems to be the best program out there and I really do want to go. Should I get in, do I go and drop $40K on tuition? To learn from the best, come out with a competitive book and hope that I will be among the 90% of grads who find work soon after. Or should I instead, save my money and spend the next two years of my life reading books and perfecting my book in the hopes that I can break into the ad industry that way?

intro Expensive ad school vs. teaching myself?It sounds to us like you answered your own question, but we’ll be redundant and throw in our thinking. There is literally no comparison between where an education at a school like the VCU Adcenter will get you vs. trying to become self-taught through some kind of osmosis process reading books. There are many possible paths to a successful career in advertising but studying books isn’t one of them. It’s certainly part of any education but doesn’t stand in for the whole deal.

The money for a good education will absolutely be worth it. The key word here is “good”. Don’t be one of the many who go to the wrong school that will not lead you to the kind of portfolio that will get you a good job. How do you know who’s good and who’s not? You’ve started at the top; check out any other school through their websites and stare hard at the quality of the student work and their alumni success stories. Talk to graduates. If you don’t hear and see the evidence of their greatness, take a pass and keep hunting.

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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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