View Full Version : CMU vs. RIT for communication design: HELP

01-29-2006, 10:19 PM
MY daughter got accepted into RIT's New Media program. She really likes the program and what is offered. She also got accepted into Carnegie Mellon's Communication Design program. She feels that the CMU program is more print oriented than she wants. She really wants "New Media" or "Digital Design." However, CMU does have web design courses too, and all projects are done on computer.

She also didn't like the fact that CMU's Communication Design program studios are all in the basement of a old building, although there are windows in some studios.

Which one should she pick? Is RIT not known enough to get a good job somewhere? Is the CMU name more than worth it? Does anyone have any experience with either or both of these programs.

02-05-2006, 05:27 PM
Does anyone have any info on these schools?

02-09-2006, 11:49 PM

Thank you for your earlier reply to my "SCAD - good and bad" posting. I'm not an expert on either RIT or CMU. Nonetheless, offer for your consideration.......

Someone who appeared to have thoroughly researched a number of New England Art Schools about 5 years ago and whose daughter was accepted at RIT, Prattt, Montserrat, Moores and I think one other said of her daughter who decided not to attend RIT that, "I think in terms of future employability, she could not have done better than RIT."

You may also want to consider secondary factors such as....
1. RIT is much colder
2. The RIT campus is statistically quite safe while Rochester and Pittsburgh as a whole are each considered more dangerous than average (but not terrible) ref. Sperlings Best Places to Live.
3. While CMU has more men than women, RIT has even more men (roughly 70% of the population i think). If your daughter is ugly, then RIT could be a dream. But if beautiful, then CMU may be the only chance to get any studying done.
4. Consider which school has the best "backup plan" in the event that she has a change in interests after college life begins. This happens more than occasionally.

may want to read www.studentsreview.com to see what is said there.

Frankly, the best posting on RIT is the one you wrote a couple months back after your tour there.

Personally, my intention is to steer my daughter to consider the handful or so of art schools which I think would be best for her. Have her apply and then let her pick (from those which accept her) based on whichever she feels most comfortable. Once you get to a certain point--and it sounds like you and she are there--it's best to let gut instinct take over. "The heart has its reasons that reason knoweth not." - Pascal.

Left-side-brained guys like you and me can weed out the bad choices based on numbers/facts. But once we set up a win/win situation (both CMU and RIT being "wins"), better to have the right-side-brained daughters pick with their hearts. Who knows? I may be hypocritical--my daughter a year younger than yours--but that's my intent.

In any event, all the best, taxguy!

02-12-2006, 05:06 PM
Parent of Artist, I did think of most of the things that you brought out. Thus, I was concerned with two things

1. Quality of programs AND
2. Which will give the better overall job prospects.

Yes, other criteria that you mentioned would have to be factored in once we get answers to items 1 and 2.

03-20-2006, 09:35 PM
I'm a senior in highschoolI applied to CMU and Kutztown for communication design...has anyone heard of kutztown? Its a state school in rural Pennsylvania. My art teacher says it has a great reputation and 95% job placement, plus it cheap! Does it really matter the name of the school yoyu graduate from? or is it more your portfolio and internship possibilities?

03-21-2006, 01:08 AM
My impression is that if you live in Penssylvania, you'll find Kutztown a good bang for your tuition dollar but not as good a school on the whole as CMU. CMU is good in many fields.....

Future educators and (hopeful) artists may be the star of this state university. Nearly 1,000 of their 9,000 students are Art majors. Rural town 90 miles northwest of Philadelphia. About 20 miles from Allentown. Not well known in the art world. Lots of students go home on weekends.

NASAD Accredited (This means it has the essentials an artist needs)
NASM Accredited

Bachelor's of Fine Arts Majors...
BFA in Advertising Design
BFA in Ceramics
BFA in Drawing
BFA in Graphic Design
BFA in Illustration
BFA in Metalsmithing
BFA in Painting
BFA in Photography
BFA in Printmaking
BFA in Sculpture
BFA in Textiles
BFA in Woodworking
BS in Art Education
BS in Digital Media Production

11-11-2006, 05:14 PM
Hi, Taxguy.

Earlier you had posted extensively on RIT. Did your daughter end up there or somewhere else? If she's at RIT, I would be interested if you would be kind enough to provide any updates to the earlier RIT information you provided.

My daughter is a senior in HS and considering RIT... not certain whether her first choice should be photography or fine arts. She loves photography and all types of art.

11-13-2006, 02:22 PM
Actually my daughter chose University of Cincinnati, School of Design, Art, Architeture and planning. (DAAP)

Parent of artist, you were right when you noted that when there are win-win choices, my daughter's instints should prevail.

Although she had a tough time deciding between RIT and Cincinnati, Cincinnati won out for several reasons that are particular to her:

1. She wanted a marching band,which is top notch at Cincinnati
2. She wanted a more even distribution of guys and gals.
3. RIT housing has its problems after freshmen year. Basically they have housing, but you need to take buses to get to the main campus buildings, which my daughter didn't like.
4. MAJOR FACTOR: RIT surprisingly didn't have a strong coop for design. In fact, most kids get their own jobs. Cincinnati had a very stongly entrenched paid coop program for all DAAP majors.
5. There are less core requirements at Cincinnati than that of RIT
6.RIT was very stingy with transfer and AP credits. My daughter had 4 college courses in liberal arts. For every semester of college, RIT would only give 4 credits of credit towards liberal arts. Cincinnati gave 4.5 for each. This may sound like a trivial amount; however, if you only get 8 credits for two courses, this doesn't even translate to a full year. While at Cincinnati, two college courses equal a full year.
7. She thought RIT was too cold even for her
8.Although this might not apply to you, the Jewish population at RIT was among the lowest in the US. She didn't see a lot of events or Jewish cultural activities.
9. RIT really don't have much to do near the school or even on campus. Yes, there are a lot of clubs,but these activities pale in comparison to Cincinnati that has 10 calendars of events each month.
10. My daughter really like the midwest kids that she met. She found them much friendlier than those that she met from the east coast and some other areas.
11. I think she also got a bit scared off by all the negative comments in the students review web site, especially dealing with lack of things to do on campus. O fall the schools noted on students review, RIT had among the largest amount of negative comments found among all schools.

Thus, she picked Cincinnati over RIT. Why she didn't like CMU was not expressed to me other than the fact that CMU treated her as a second rate student. She got no money from CMU , and they wouldn't even match offers made by comparable schools since she got admitted off the waitlist. She felt that waitlisted admittees are treated as second rate because of this.

For what it's worth, I really liked both RIT and CMU, as you can tell from my visits to them. We also probably liked the RIT New Media curriculum the best among all schools; however, as you wisely noted, I felt that my daughter's instincts should prevail.