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The City College of New York
The school’s BFA film program picks 25 students a year for a two-year curriculum, with emphasis placed on single-camera narrative filmmaking and documentary production. At the end of the program, students complete a thesis project that is either a 10-minute film, 30-page screenplay or journal-ready academic research paper.
SUNY Stony Brook
First-year students in the three-year program get a master class in independent film production from Killer Films’ Christine Vachon (who is artistic director of the MFA film program) and business partner Pamela Koffler before embarking on their own short film productions.
The New School program is notable for its flexibility, which allows students — 80 percent of whom receive some type of merit-based university scholarship — to combine courses to fit their own interests. Ultimately, students graduate with either a master’s in media studies or entertainment management.
School of Visual Arts in NYC
This BFA in film offers specializations in sound, editing, documentaries, cinematography, screenwriting and directing. Equipment includes both HD digital and classic Panavision cameras, with the school’s theater located in the city’s Chelsea neighborhood.
Cal State Los Angeles
B.A., M.A. and MFA degrees are offered at Cal State L.A. through the Department of Television, Film, Media Studies, which boasts industry partners like the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, Sundance Institute and Film Independent. The student-run Golden Eagle Productions assists with funding, equipment rentals and industry networking events.
Cal State Long Beach
CSULB Department of Film and Electronic Arts offers a B.A. degree where students studying narrative cinema choose a specialization in either producing and directing or cinematography. The school also is a part of the CSU Entertainment Alliance, which helps students find industry internships.
Santa Monica College
An associate degree and certificate program is offered by the community college in West L.A., where participants can focus on physical production or critical theory. SMC also offers the ability to easily transfer into the UC or CSU systems, where students can continue their education in a four-year program.
San Francisco State University
The NorCal school offers a unique program emphasizing experimental video and political activism. In addition to B.A.s, M.A.s and MFAs, SFSU also runs a robust archive project that gives students an opportunity to curate and assist with archival research.
This story first appeared in the Aug. 11 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. Click here to subscribe.
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