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The Raleigh—Durham region is home to major universities and is known for its eight-county Research Triangle—named for the research being done by the regional universities. This research and the young population is a major reason that many large businesses have located to the area.
Major regional employers include American Airlines, BSF, Burt's Bees, Cisco Systems, DuPont, Fidelity Investments, IBM, Qualcomm, Red Hat, Sony Ericsson, Toyota, and Verizon.
Major film festivals include the Flicker Film Festival, Full Frame Documentary Film Festival Retrofantasma Film Festival, and Nevermore Film Festival. Students also enjoy the Hopscotch Music Festival, Ackland Art Museum, Contemporary Art Museum of Raleigh, North Carolina Museum of Art, and the Nasher Museum of Art.
Sports enthusiasts enjoy watching the Carolina Hurricanes, based in Raleigh, and the Durham Bulls baseball team.
The Art Institute of Raleigh—Durham is located heart of the downtown Durham historical and entertainment district, at the American Tobacco Campus, a 1 million square foot registered historic site with roots as the American Tobacco Factory. The complex has been converted into retail, residential, restaurant and office space, providing an exciting, creative atmosphere. The Art Institute of Raleigh-Durham is located next to the Triple-A Durham Bulls baseball park and is adjacent to a 2,800-seat performing arts center.
The Art Institute of Raleigh-Durham is home to industry-related equipment and software that provides students with real-world experience in the areas of design, media arts, culinary, and fashion. These include:
Many students choose to live in school-sponsored furnished housing at University Commons, Campus Creek, and Century Creek apartment complexes, located close to The Art Institute of Raleigh—Durham. Along with rent, housing costs include electric, water, and internet service. Amenities include onsite resident assistants, access to public transportation, onsite courtesy officers, laundry facilities, business center, pool, fitness center, and ample parking. Students who live in school-sponsored housing are invited to participate in special activities during the school year.
To build relationships and gain experience in their areas of study, many students participate in special events and workshops, join student groups, and work in internships within the Raleigh-Durham area. The school offers the following services to help students during their time at The Art Institute of Raleigh—Durham: