The Student Academy Awards is an annual competition for college and university filmmakers, sponsored by the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences. Winners – selected by the professional filmmaker members of the Academy – receive trophies (but not Oscar statuettes) and cash prizes. Many have gone on to have successful careers in movies and television.
The nine finalists for animation in 2012 ARE:
Chocolate Milk, Eliza Kinkz, University of California, Los Angeles
Cowboy, Clone, Dust, Matthew Christensen, New York University
Eyrie, David Wolter, California Institute of the Arts
The Jockstrap Raiders, Mark Nelson, University of California, Los Angeles
La Lune et le Coq, Raymond McCarthy Bergeron, Rochester Institute of Technology
Lizard and the Ladder, Aaron Bristow, Utah Valley University
My Little Friend, Eric Prah, Ringling College of Art and Design
Reviving Redwood, Matt Sullivan, Ringling College of Art and Design
Shinobi Blues, Yue Liu, School of Visual Arts.
Despite there being well over 100 schools offering animation classes in the US, the same schools dominate the student academy awards year after year. This seems to indicate which schools seem to have the strongest programs and attract many of the best talented students—something for potential students to think about. The awards ceremony will be held June 9 in LA.