Art School Is a Tragic Ripoff
Noah Bradley: It's a crime to pay $246K for an art education
By Kate Seamons, Newser Staff
Posted Jun 27, 2013 11:37 AM CDT

(Newser) – Move over, law school: There's a new worthless degree in town, at least according to Noah Bradley. The artist, writing on, gets right to the point: "Art school is a waste of your money" (emphasis his). Though Bradley himself attended two prestigious art schools, he's not some bitter unsuccessful grad. His career is chugging along just fine, but he finds himself "saddened and ashamed at art schools and their blatant exploitation of students." The number-crunching reality: Four years at Rhode Island School of Design cost $245,816, he writes, which is nearly $10,000 more than you'd spend getting a degree from Harvard Law.

You can support yourself, even comfortably, as an artist. But not if there's a $3,000 student loan payment that comes due ... every month ... for 10 years. And guess how many times Bradley's diploma has landed him a job? Zero. "Nobody cares," he writes. But an art education is still key. You just don't need to go to college to get one. He lays out what he's calling the "$10K Ultimate Art Education," which ranges from a $190 must-read reading list to $1,040 to be spent on a year's worth of weekly figure drawing sessions. "Art is a wonderful, beautiful, fulfilling pursuit," writes Bradley. "Don’t ruin it with a mountain of debt." Click for his full column.

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Jul 6, 2013 12:27 AM CDT
IF you don't build your house on a SOLID foundation, it won't last, won't be worth much. To build a foundation you need BOTH formal education AND hands-on do it experience. Myself, at age 10 my older brother had his younger brothers working an aircraft assembly line building model airplanes so he could fly them (and crash them). But I did learn how to build light weight but rigid fuselages from balsa wood that could take enormous rubber band torque because I "planked" the stick construction by gluing on external plates cut from sheet balse (at age 10) In high school I took all the design drafting classes I could (they aren't even offered in high school these days) Worked summers as a draftsman on tooling for the Apollo Saturn Moon Rocket in Wichita, KS Boeing plant- W/a BSME (design option) Rocketdyne picked me up for their Santa Susana Propulsion Field Lab where they developed the rocket propulsion to take 1st man to the moon, but I was picked BECAUSE of all the drafting training I'd had in BOTH 4yrs HS and 2yrs Univ. plus working at Boeing. Lucky for me I was assigned to help design a thruster calibration instrument which we accomplished in 1964 JIT for Gemini tests OR no one was going to go to the moon (Can't DOCK in space if you thrusters are not accurately calibrated) Only 3 countries have accomplished Calibration of Thrusters- USA, USSR, and now China Thruster calibration is req'd to achieve angular AND displacement alignment, more accurate the better Gemini proved US had the capability, a major stepping stone on the way to the moon To measure the "ringing" of a thruster, I coupled an accelerometer in line w/a cluster of 4 strain gauges connected in a Wheatstone bridge circuit. It measured reaction of Mass X Acceleration and subtracted it out Result- we could measure IMPULSE of a ball peen hammer strike OR a the IMPULSE of a record changer tone arm settling down onto the record- tremendous range of impulse, and THAT was the level of control Mr. Neil Armstrong had going for him when he manually steered the moon lander onto surface of the moon The young Electrical Engr who had graduated from ITT had the concept, but my drafting ability combined it into an intricately woven package aligning the 4 strain gauges & accelerometer with forces to be measured, thus adhering to the Abbe principle of precision measurement- forces measured must be IN LINE When I specified a #5 screw for final assy, old-timers scoffed at that (no one uses #5, its a #4 OR #6) But the checker came back with conclusion it had to be a #5- No room for a #6 socket and #4 was too weak Point is- successful design depends on a balance between formal education and hands-on experience
Jun 28, 2013 11:39 AM CDT
Most schools of higher learning are a ripoff, you are being taught by people who couldn't make it in the real world and you are supposed to learn how to make it on their teaching. Those who can, do. Those who can't, teach.
Jun 28, 2013 12:03 AM CDT
YUP! That's like "teaching someone to be alive." You can't do it. You're either alive or you're not.