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Reviews for Champlain College
I followed a tour guide through thirteen other schools before stumbling upon Champlain College in Burlington, Vermont. I was convinced that I wasn't going to find the place for me; half of the schools I had visited didn't even have the major I wanted. When a friend gave me the link to their website, I had all but given up on my college search. I could tell that Champlain was different from the first time the website’s homepage appeared on my computer screen. Instead of filling their website with needed yet boring words and maybe a few pictures here and there, it was almost like browsing a trendy blog. There were gorgeous pictures of the school, videos covering what students thought about the school, the school's unique ‘upside-down’ approach with educating their students, housing, and even videos covering what the surrounding city of Burlington was like. They also had a virtual tour option, so I knew where the buildings were, what the gorgeous view from the top of the library looked like, and what their refurbished victorian mansion dorms looked like before I even set foot in Vermont, let alone Burlington. For an out-of-state student like me, and an artsy one at that, this kind of stuff was incredibly important. Although one still has the option of reading about Champlain, the videos provide people with the same information just in a more visually appealing manor. After spending weeks of simply reading other colleges websites, the visual stimulation was a breath of fresh air.? “A breath of fresh air” is exactly what Champlain has been for me since my first visit in 2012 (there’s been 4 more and a two-week Game Academy since then). Not only was the school even more amazing in person, the community vibe was outstanding and they offered the kind of education I was looking for. Everyone was incredibly outgoing, kind, and helpful no matter who they were talking to. People seemed to genuinely care about those around them, not only within college borders but within the community. The upside down curriculum, in which you get started on your major directly from day one, was unique enough to set this school apart from the beginning; everything else has just been layers and layers of delectable icing upon the cake. (Speaking of which, theirs is delicious). After visiting this school I’ve found it hard to see anywhere else the same. Having such an impact on someone after only a few visits, I believe, is worthy of 5 stars.
Although I've just been accepted for Game Art and Animation in the fall of 2014, last year I went to a two-week game development academy over the summer. The professors were industry professionals who knew how to teach well. They were patient, clear-spoken, concise, and efficient in teaching us as much useful information as they could within the two week class period. Champlain is known for having an average class size of around 18 and there were around 23 in the academy. Even so, all questions were tended to. The workload was challenging but manageable. You were informed that the project scopes were yours, since you were making games that you designed, and how much work was needed was your choice. You could have a really awesome game, but that meant you would need to give up a little free time to work on it.
Again, I've only been for a summer course, but from what I've seen and/or heard there's plenty of clubs to choose from. If you don't see the one you want then you can create it and a lot of clubs do things to help out the surrounding community. There are open mic nights every week and sometimes they show free movies in the fireside lounge. They have recreational sports teams and the gym is open almost all the time.
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