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There are problems to be solved. And futures to be formed.

The creative life isn’t for the faint of heart. It’s for those who believe in themselves enough to trust their instincts, leave their comfort zones, and push their talents to the limit. If you’re up for it, keep going.

Our Academics   Our San Diego Campus

NEW Bachelor’s Degree Program in Software Development for Creative Technologies

Learn to conceive and create unique software and programming solutions for arts and entertainment, gaming, film, leisure, and business, with an emphasis on a dynamic user experience.

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NEW Bachelor's Degree Program in Professional Writing for Creative Arts

Your first step toward a career in creating compelling stories and engaging content for an array of expanding fields—entertainment, gaming, social media, websites, advertising, business, and more.

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NEW Bachelor's Degree Program in Marketing & Entertainment Management

An innovative curriculum to help prepare you for a career in managing and promoting entertainment and informational events for cultural venues, corporations, creative organizations, and more.

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NEW Bachelor's Degree Program in Instructional Technology & Design

Make an impact where the future of education is taking shape: the digital realm. You can learn to create innovative experiences and effective strategies to engage, instruct, and train students of all ages.

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We offer guidance and support for transfer students.

We’ll help you navigate the steps of transferring to our creative, hands-on community. You may be eligible to transfer your credits to The Art Institutes—and we offer important grants and scholarship opportunities for which you may qualify. If you’re ready to immerse yourself in our rigorous classrooms and studios, we’re ready to support you every step of the way. Read on for all of the details.

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Upcoming Events

Open House

December 10, 2016
9:30 AM

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College Bound

December 17, 2016

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Orientation

January 5, 2017

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Latest Happenings

Top 5 Tips for Transfer Students
Top 5 Tips for Transfer Students

Transferring to a new school is an exciting time, but it can also be an overwhelming process. If you’re an Art Institutes transfer student, you have enough on your plate without having to stress over every last detail of the transfer process. That’s why we put together these Top 5 Tips for Transfer Students. Armed with the right information, all you have to do is get excited for the next phase of your student journey!

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San Diego Interior Design Students Compete in IIDA Fashion Show

Taylor Shaffer, Rachel Escobedo, Adrianna Ramon, Bry Davis, Arlene Deossa, and Rashad Davis are working toward a Bachelor of Science In Interior Design at The Art Institute of California—San Diego, a campus of Argosy University.

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San Diego Instructor to Deliver Talk at Comic-Con

Dr. Wei Xu, a Visual & Game Programming (VGP) instructor at The Art Institute of California – San Diego, a campus of Argosy University, will deliver a talk entitled “You Don’t Need Talent to Learn Drawing” at Comic-Con 2016, July 23, 2016. This will be the fifth time that Dr. Xu will host a panel at Comic-Con.

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Meet Our Alumni

  • The Art Institute of California - San Diego alumni Brian Townsend

    Brian Townsend

    Media Arts & Animation , 2010

    "The skills I learned in school helped me turn a hobby into a profession."

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    Brian Townsend

    Brian Townsend describes himself as a kid who was always drawing in his notebook instead of taking notes. His natural creativity led him to a career as a 3D artist and photographer on the design team for Microsoft Surface tablets. He had the prestigious honor of creating all of the shots used by the CEO of Microsoft and President of Windows when the Surface tablet was unveiled—his design work was also displayed prominently on the screens in Time Square in New York City.

    Brian creates all of the marketing shorts and 3D animations for the tablets and his job involves photography, 3D animation, and graphic design. “Often I help the design team photo realistically visualize [new concepts in 3D] long before they physically exist. This helps them work through design variations as well as communicate their ideas clearly to the engineering teams who actually build the products,” he says. Brian adds that the most important part of his job involves telling a clear story as quickly as possible, using images and animation.

    In addition to his creative pursuits, Brian is a military veteran who served as a combat engineer in the U.S. Army and achieved the rank of Specialist. He served in both Korea and Iraq, and believes that his military training provided the discipline he needed to transition to school and finally to a civilian career with Microsoft in Seattle. “My time spent in the service prepared me for school in ways I never imagined. Had it not been for the Army, I wouldn't have had the same work ethic that allowed me to get so much out of my education.”

    Brian, who in 2010 earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Media Arts & Animation from The Art Institute of California—San Diego, says that the skills he learned in school helped him to turn his creative passion into a profession. “[In my job], I use skills I learned from the foundation classes on up through the most advanced classes. I can’t emphasize the importance of the fundamentals enough though. I fall back to those constantly and I still reference my fundamentals of design and color theory books.”

    See ge.artinstitutes.edu/programoffering/376 for program duration, tuition, fees and other costs, median debt, salary data, alumni success, and other important info.

    *As of 2012, a campus of Argosy University

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  • The Art Institute of California - San Diego alumni Corey Bolwyn

    Corey Bolwyn

    Media Arts & Animation , 2008

    "Embrace the artistic vision and the technology that will push the art. Every film has its extraordinary challenges and none of them ever feel the same."

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    Corey Bolwyn

    Corey Bolwyn’s love for animation began when he was a child, playing the game Dragon’s Lair. “I was blown away by Don Bluth's character ‘Dirk the Daring,’” he says. Years later, Corey has helped to create movies that could provide that same inspiration to the next generation. Corey, a Character Technical Director for Walt Disney Animation Studios, has worked on Academy Award winning major motion pictures including “Big Hero 6” and “Frozen.” His most recent accomplishment is creating animation for the recently-released “Zootopia.” His role on the film was Character Technical Director and Technical Animator.

    Corey is a graduate of The Art Institute of California—San Diego.* He earned a Bachelor of Science in Media Arts & Animation in 2008.

    Working as a member of the creative team, Corey was tasked with achieving the artistic vision of the film’s directors—while staying on time. “You have to find a balance between the highest quality possible versus knowing when to stop due to time constraints.”

    Corey describes “Zootopia” as a very stylized film. “We had to hit very silhouette-driven shapes in our character’s performance. You can see this style in the art book and in the film. Besides the shape language, most of the characters had moving fur and clothes going over the fur. This makes life very challenging at times. The fur likes to come through the clothes—if you don't know what you are doing.”

    Corey adds that some departments at Disney work more closely together than others. “I happen to be in a department that is very close, and we are all very technical and artistic. The two disciplines require that we collaborate closely and feed off of each other. If you don't, you won't last long.”

    Corey has now been in the animation industry for eight years, and he believes that the biggest change in that time is the complexity of animation. “Technology allows us to create very hand-crafted films—literally anything you want to make. Even within our department there are so many varying disciplines where artists are experts. It really is quite fascinating.”

    Corey recommends that current students keep learning and growing. “Embrace the artistic vision and the technology that will push the art. Every film has its extraordinary challenges and none of them ever feel the same.”

    * As of 2012, a campus of Argosy University

    See ge.artinstitutes.edu/programoffering/376 for program duration, tuition, fees, and other costs, median debt, salary data, alumni success, and other important info.

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  • The Art Institute of California - San Diego alumni Enrique Torres

    Enrique Torres

    Media Arts & Animation , 2005

    "[My education] helped me to keep up with the fast pace that is the entertainment world."

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    Enrique Torres

    Enrique Torres is a freelance 3D generalist, character artist, and designer who generates 3D assets for designers. Enrique enjoys the challenges of his career and the knowledge that he can keep growing. “There’s no limit on how far I can get in terms of success and knowledge as an artist. I can make choices to increase my career or I have the choice to stay where I am.”

    Enrique says that his most proud professional moment came when he won an Emmy for the show “Sports Science,” which aired on ESPN. “I have an Emmy with my name that I get to keep. It’s on a display at my house.” Enrique says that his influences include everyone from from comic book artists to classic artists. “Jim Lee was always my favorite. Heinrich Kley was someone who [truly inspired me].”

    Enrique, who in 2005 earned a Bachelor of Science in Media Arts & Animation from The Art Institute of California—San Diego, says that his education exposed him to a variety of software. “There were times when I had to use what I was taught [in school] to finish big-budget projects. [My education] helped me to keep up with the fast pace that is the entertainment world.” Enrique believes that there are four key attributes to success in his industry. “One is talent. Two is networking. Three is professionalism. And four is always have a positive attitude.”

    See ge.artinstitutes.edu/programoffering/376 for program duration, tuition, fees, and other costs, median debt, salary data, alumni success, and other important info.

    *As of 2012, a campus of Argosy University

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  • The Art Institute of California - San Diego alumni Erica Alexander

    Erica Alexander

    Interior Design , 2015

    "Working on group projects [in school] was so helpful because I'm constantly working with other designers, clients, sales representatives, and architecture and design firms."

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    Erica Alexander

    Erica Alexander is a designer at Tangram Interiors in Santa Fe Springs, California. She’s responsible for space planning, field measures, client management, and CET Design—a visual space planning software package. Erica works on multiple projects at a time and says that she is constantly growing as a designer. “[Learning other computer programs in school] helped me to catch on to [CET] quickly. Working on group projects was so helpful because I’m constantly working with other designers, clients, sales representatives, and architecture and design firms. Knowing how to hear what people are saying and how to combine ideas from multiple people is very helpful.”

    Erica’s biggest challenge has been “figuring out her place” within Tangram Interiors. “It took me several weeks to understand how the company works within the context of the larger field of interior design.” She began listening to others around her and learning from fellow designers who took her under their wing. This helped her to feel comfortable and confident in her position at the company. Erica recommends that students and those new to interior design keep pushing forward, no matter how difficult things get. “Many times I didn’t think I was going to make it or could make it through the classes—yet I made it through.”

    The creative collaboration at her workplace serves as inspiration for Erica. “I am constantly talking with other designers and have helped other [them to] consider new ways of planning a space.” She credits her education with helping her to find her place in the interior design world. “When I interviewed with Tangram, I knew that all of the hard work had paid off. I got many compliments on my portfolio and I knew that this was a place that I had to work.”

    Erica, who in 2015 earned a Bachelor of Science in Interior Design from The Art Institute of California—San Diego, says that she’s pushing herself to understand products and how the design process works. She’s currently working on an account that combines educational, healthcare, and corporate design. “[It’s giving] me a small taste of everything that Tangram does.” She views this as a challenge to build her knowledge and experience. “[Tangram] made me feel so welcome. I knew that this was what I was supposed to be doing.”

    See http://ge.artinstitutes.edu/programoffering/375 for program duration, tuition, fees and other costs, median debt, salary data, alumni success, and other important info.

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  • The Art Institute of California - San Diego alumni Karla Franco

    Karla Franco

    Fashion Design , 2014

    "What I enjoy the most about my career is the satisfaction of making someone feel confident and beautiful."

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    Karla Franco

    Karla Franco is working as a sample maker for designer Michael Costello in Los Angeles, California. She’s responsible for constructing garments, patternmaking, fittings, and creating samples. “My typical work day consists of making samples for Michael Costello that [are] showcased in different fashion shows around the world. I usually make one to two samples of gowns or other garments a day.”

    She adds that she’s proud to have won The Art Institute of California—Los Angeles’ fashion show and landed a job with a notable fashion designer. “I get inspired everywhere I go, but what I get most inspired from are all the cultures I get exposed to. I also love getting inspired by different geometric shapes. Many of my designs are composed of triangular patterns.” Her artistic hero is Frida Kahlo, who Karla describes as “the best example of someone who believed in herself and expressed her emotions through her art—even her toughest moments.”

    Karla, who in 2014 earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Fashion Design from The Art Institute of California—San Diego, says that her education provided essential knowledge for her career. “It educated me on all the basics and technical skills I needed to become a successful designer.” She adds that current students should be well versed in social media and its ability to showcase fashion to a wide audience. “I believe that the internet can be a double edged sword. It affects designers positively in show casing our work but it can also affect it us by increasing competition. Anyone can just post anything in their social media and knock off designs, but overall it's great as it creates opportunity. Competition is a great way to motivate us [to do] our best.”

    See http://ge.artinstitutes.edu/programoffering/369 for program duration, tuition, fees and other costs, median debt, salary data, alumni success, and other important info.

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  • The Art Institute of California - San Diego alumni Matt Sloman

    Matt Sloman

    Culinary Management , 2014

    "[Since completing my education], I have a much better working knowledge of how the kitchens and the back of the house works."

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    Matt Sloman

    Matt Sloman is a banquet supervisor at Harrah’s Southern California Resort in Valley Center, California. He’s responsible for planning and executing client events as well as overseeing staff, servers, and housemen who work at the event venue. “The one thing that I enjoy most about this position is the interaction I have with both clients and guests alike. The ability to make people smile is what keeps me going every day,” he says. Matt adds that he always put his best effort forward. “[I] know that how I respond to a guest’s questions or requests could make their experience either great or less than great.”

    While he’s only been in his position a short time, Matt is excited to have instituted a new staff training program. “Ensuring that we are performing to the highest possible service standards available [is important to me].” He adds that one of the biggest challenges to working in his field is the technology involved in processing client invoices. “Great service is great service and that will never change.”

    Matt, who in 2014 earned a Bachelor of Science in Culinary Management from The Art Institute of California—San Diego, says that his education provided a strong working knowledge of both the kitchen and back of house. “This helps in providing a much better product to the customer.” Matt recommends that current students soak up knowledge in all areas of the kitchen, hotel, or resort. “One thing about the banquet department is that we interact with almost every other department. It really helps if you know what those departments do.”

    See http://ge.artinstitutes.edu/programoffering/368 for program duration, tuition, fees and other costs, median debt, salary data, alumni success, and other important info.

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  • The Art Institute of California - San Diego alumni Sean K. McCreery

    Sean K. McCreery

    Culinary Arts , 2007

    "Being a chef allows your inner artist to come out in your food."

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    Sean K. McCreery

    Sean K. McCreery is an operations manager at Sodexo in Vail, Arizona. He supervises 100 employees to ensure that 12,300 children are served two healthy meals each day. In his position, Sean oversees the daily food service operations for 17 schools, grades Kindergarten through 12th. “I always need to give more than 100% daily. Being a chef allows your inner artist to come out in your food. Food service [can be] a thankless job, but I get gratitude by seeing the smile after that first bite—and the silence around the table from the people eating my creations,” he says.

    Sean’s busy workplace means that he’s constantly learning and teaching. “When you have a wealth of knowledge, everyone wants to ask you the questions. In doing that, I became more of a teacher.” His experience in the United States Marine Corps added to the leadership abilities he brings to workplace and kitchen. “In school [and now], students looked to me for help, guidance, and mentorship.”

    He adds that the challenges of his career mean he’s also evolving as a manager. “Being in charge of a multi-unit operation is where my career is going. I think the next step for me will be to start my own consulting firm. I want to help others achieve the success I have in my life.”

    Sean began his education after serving in the Marines as a chef. “I have a bit of a different [background] story,” he says. From a young age, he knew he wanted to be a chef. “It was very challenging trying to learn all the jobs and becoming good at each one. But looking back at my wealth of knowledge, it was well worth all the hard work.”

    Sean is a graduate of both The Art Institute of California—San Diego and The Art Institute of Portland. He recommends that current students challenge themselves with higher goals. “When you get to one goal, strive to get to the next.” He says that he realized the benefits of his education when he was placed in a management position. “It is all a growing process and a mind set of being able to strive to attain the goals you have set in life.”

    *as of 2012, a campus of Argosy University

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Pre-College Sessions for High School Students

Pre-College CTA
A hands-on head start.

High school juniors and seniors who have completed and submitted an application to an Art Institutes school can begin building a foundation of success before first term begins—at no charge—in our innovative College Bound program.* To find out more, visit AiCollegeBound.com.

* Students who successfully complete a course will receive a certificate of completion. The College Bound courses are non-credit bearing and do not transfer into our academic program offerings or the offerings of any other institution. However as part of the course you will have the opportunity to develop a portfolio that you are able to request proficiency credit. Proficiency credit is awarded based on the proficiency credit policy defined in an institution’s academic catalog. The cost of the College Bound courses varies between $325 and $350. This cost is waived for any student that has an application and completed essay on file with the school. Check with the school you are interested in attending for exceptions and details, as not all programs are offered at all locations. Individual location participation is subject to change.

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