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What field of video should I major in?

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Jonathan WilsonWhat field of video should I major in?
by on Oct 19, 2012 at 5:22:26 am

Hey everyone, I hope it's okay to post this thread here. Business and Marketing was the most relevant topic I could find. I was hoping somebody could give me a few words of advice. I'm a 19 year old college freshman and I'm not sure if I chose the right major for me. I love creating and producing videos of all sorts, and I've been making videos since before I started high school nearly 6 years ago. I know that I want to produce video for a living so I decided to go with an EMP "Electronic Media Production" major, which focuses mainly on television and the production side of film making. This is great because I really enjoy shooting and directing, but recently I've realized that what I really love is working in post production, editing video and creating effects in AE and FCP. Text animations, lower 3rd titles, special effects, I just love making video graphics in general. I would really like to learn more about creating graphics and animations, but I wouldn't want to change to a graphic design major mainly because I would more than likely end up learning how to make digital art and still images rather than video. Do any of you guys know what kind of major I might be looking at here?

Even if I don't end up finding anything I'll be perfectly content with a degree in EMP, but if there is any other degree I could get that would help me get a job creating graphics or editing video exclusively, I would love to know about it.
I currently go to MTSU, Middle Tennessee State University, on the off chance that any of you know anything about my school.

Much appreciated!

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Mark SuszkoRe: What field of video should I major in?
by on Oct 19, 2012 at 2:03:07 pm

In a parellel universe I never lived in, I majored in communications law and copyrights/ clearances, and was able to retire to the Caymans at age 41.

Don't be afraid to take art courses: a solid background in art is a fundamental asset to a video graphics artist. Realize too that in a post-graduate education, you have the ability to customize your curriculum somewhat.

I would say if you can get into CalArts for some courses, its worth it.

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Kylee PeñaRe: What field of video should I major in?
by on Oct 19, 2012 at 3:14:33 pm

I knew I wanted to be in post when I went to college, but I still went with a program that covered more than that. The downside to this is that I didn't always focus on post production stuff. The upside is that I learned a lot of other stuff that is really good to know as an editor and mograph designer. You may want to be in animation/graphics/post, but you'll be stronger if you understand the entirety of video production, and college is a great place to make this happen.

If you approach it like this, you'll have to put a lot of your own time in. You should work really hard in the classes you find most relevant. Get to know the instructors. Go to their office hours and just talk about the industry. My college had independent studies where you could take 3 credit hours (1 course) to focus on something the school didn't exactly offer, working alongside one of the instructors. I did this twice to fill in a lot of gaps. I did internships that were more focused in post. I did a lot of side projects on my own, a lot of additional learning. And take courses outside of your major -- business, art, public speaking, my university even had a wine tasting class. That's pretty important for our industry too, IMO.

And for a time in college, I did wonder if maybe producing and writing was a thing I'd like more. Spent part of an internship doing it. I'm an editor now. HA!

Basically, don't worry that every class isn't 100% relevant, and don't resent the ones you find less useful. Because you'll use something from every course, eventually.

twitter: @kyl33t

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Roger Van DuynRe: What field of video should I major in?
by on Oct 19, 2012 at 5:03:19 pm

You might consider at least a minor in business, with an emphasis on marketing. On the other hand, you might want to major in business, with a minor in video production. Video is a tough business, and having a strong background in business would be a very good idea.


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Andrew RendellRe: What field of video should I major in?
by on Oct 20, 2012 at 12:21:31 pm

I'd keep it fairly wide at this stage. You don't know what you will be doing in five or ten years time, so every bit that you learn about now will help you later on.

Even if you do have a career in the specialization that you have in mind right now, knowing about the other parts of the business will stand you in very good stead anyway. And tbh not that many of us spend our whole career in one specialization these days.

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Richard HerdRe: What field of video should I major in?
by on Oct 22, 2012 at 5:59:32 pm

Your school offers a program:

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