My Experience at Full Sail
Full Sail University quite literally changed my life in many ways. It gave me that feeling of being among people who share my passions.
What is Full Sail?
Full Sail University is a media college for people with a dream to get into the entertainment industry. They have a wide variety of degrees ranging from film, writing, video games, and music. All of these degrees help hone your craft, build a portfolio, and gain plenty of on-hand experience.
If you can, I highly recommend choosing to live on-campus rather than online to get the entire experience of the college. Not only is it 30 minutes from Orlando, but there are tons of tasty fast-food restaurants within walking distance of the college. There are no on-campus dorms, only apartments. However, the benefit here is that if you’re going to Full Sail, all apartment complexes will offer a discount on your lease.
PRO TIP: If you can afford it, you’ll be able to apply for a Universal Annual Pass. It will grant you annual access to Universal anytime you want. It is a great way to treat yourself after a hard week of intense classes.
My Experience with Scholarships
The University is incredible with the tech it provides you, but it can be expensive. The price is justified because all of your college books get included in the tuition cost. In addition, you will either receive a Macbook or a high-end Windows Laptop (I believe game designers are the main ones to receive the Windows Laptop).
That’s why scholarships are super important. The path I took was applying for several bank loans. However, I was denied all of them due to poor credit scores. Fortunately for me, Full Sail had a scholarship for someone who gets denied a loan from a few banks. With that scholarship, Full Sail paid my first full year of college completely!
Accelerated Learning Program
Typically a bachelor's degree takes about four years for you to complete, but my bachelor's degree only took me less than two. The way that I was able to achieve this was through Full Sail’s accelerated learning program. The way the program works is by having you take two classes a month. The program shoves a semester's worth of content into that month. That means that the classes give you a lot of knowledge quickly, and work with intense deadlines. This type of program is best for getting you used to deadlines because they are just as intense in the entertainment industry.
Being a part of a Writers Group
When I decided to go to Full Sail, I pursued a Bachelor of the Fine Arts Degree in Creative Writing for Entertainment. The major presented me with some great classes that helped me find out what medium I do enjoy writing and what I don't enjoy writing. It turns out romance writing is not for me.
Some of the most beneficial classes I took were TV Writing (Script Writing), Video Game Writing, Horror, Mystery, and Suspense, and Comic Book Writing.
When I finished my prerequisite courses, I got placed with a group of people who would graduate when I did. This way, we got to take all the same classes together as well. As we grew closer, we all became part of a writer group. We would collaborate and provide feedback on our work. We even got to make our webisode about a drunk homeless man who got his hands on a mind-altering alien device.
Hall of Fame
Every year, Full Sail closes down all classes to host a week-long event called the Hall of Fame. This event is where the whole college celebrates graduates that have gone on and done amazing things. These graduates have worked on feature films like Dune or Bladerunner 2049. There are activities throughout the school’s main parking lot, special guest speaker events, networking events, and much more. Hall of Fame is a great way to meet people already in the industry, let them know who you are, and learn a thing or two. Overall, it’s a great reminder of why you went to Full Sail in the first place.
I think one of the best long-term benefits that I've reaped from going to Full Sail University, on-campus, is the connections and friends that I've made while there. I do my best to stay in contact with the friends I've made down there in my writing class and even friends from other majors. I recently sent three books that have helped my creative brain a ton to an old film-major friend. Another post-college benefit is I remain in contact with some of my college professors via Facebook. I'll leave a comment now and again, message them any life updates, and see how they're doing.
You pay for the education, but the natural connections you make are priceless.
- Great networking interactions
- A super nerdy and passionate community
- Builds your portfolio and resume (literally)
- Lots of beneficial work with hands-on experience
- Web-show class (got to make a web-show film ourselves) (see if you can find a link)
- Some classes feel too short
- Not as involved assistance with post-college helping secure a job in your industry (this is my experience and could very well be my own fault)
Full Sail University quite literally changed my life in many ways. It gave me that feeling of being among people who share my passions. It and my new friends helped me find out what I like to do and what I do not like to do.
Getting to meet all the people that have been out in the industry has been super insightful and very inspiring. My class on writing scripts for tv shows was probably my toughest class, but it provided me the most benefit to my writing. He was super tough on me, but my work improved by the end of it. I was motivated to do better because the professor was actively in the TV industry, so he knew what to expect out of a good script.
Full Sail has daily tours that you can attend. They'll show you a general overall view of the campus and what they do. Then once a month, pre-pandemic, they have a once-a-month behind-the-scenes tour. It is a much more deep dive and has a lot more structure. You let them know what major you are interested in and sort you into groups so you can see and chat with the professors you'll have in your major.
Overall, if you have that creative spark or want to get into the entertainment industry, the experience of Full Sail University is very worth checking out. Also, if you can and have the means, I highly recommend moving there and staying on campus.