Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Waiting for Superman

I recently watched a documentary called "Waiting for Superman" that addressed the issue of America's failing public school system.

As unfortunate as this is, while watching this documentary I could not help but question my own education, specifically here at FIDM.


There is not a single day, or single quarter that goes by when I don't hear complaints about FIDM's administration, politics, and policies.
You hear it every day, Alumni not being able to find jobs, students complaining about tuition, teachers complaining about the curriculum and yet this seems to be the topic of discussion that reverberates throughout the institutes hallways, relentlessly.
It's almost as if our school anthem has become the students complaints followed by disregard by our administrators that echo back with a tour for prospective student's who are witnessing the same false promises I dreamed of not too long ago.

I can't help but think of where my own education stands as a graduating student and why outside these halls, my pride falls short when I state the name of my school. I think of the competition that my peers here at FIDM will face from other schools, and if we are up on the same level as students graduating from other universities. I can't help but think this because, this is the security that FIDM did promise me when entering this institute, and now I am doubting if I could even compete with students from other schools?

I think the reason for this is doubt comes from our schools structure itself and the fact that it is a for profit university. Although I do believe that there are good, and qualified instructors at fidm, I feel as if though the problem is the lack of interest, as students learning enrichment and education to be the schools top priority. I think of how the school is more focused on expansion of endowment, instead of the cultivation of their current student body. Do not get me wrong, again, I believe that FIDM does have instructors who are great not only at their profession in the industry but in educating students as well but, I believe that the numbers of these instructors fall short. For what we pay for in tuition, and for our own school being an accredited university, I believe that every single one of our instructors should be an outstanding educator, and professional. I am baffled by some of the instructors, and even the curriculum that is taught at FIDM. Since FIDM does run as a for profit, it has the ability to higher professionals who have industry experience even if they only have an Associate of Arts degree. Although I do believe that many of these teachers are great in the industry, many of these instructors do not have the formal educational background, or a Masters, and in some cases even a Masters Degree. I can't help but think of how we are supposed to compete with schools, even HIGH SCHOOLS with more educated and qualified educators. I can't even begin to fathom how difficult it was for me to find out that my own classes at FIDM were not transferable, and that I had to take another year at a Junior College to apply to a 4 year university.

What I don't fully understand is that I do believe FIDM does have student's and instructors who are passionate, and most of all, it has every possible resource to change and be at a competitive level.

What I don't understand is why there has not been opposition, or at least why no one has exposed the school for what it actually encompasses, I can only hope better for current and prospective students, and that one day FIDM will be able to not only teach industry practices, but challenge them on an academic and intellectual level so they are not only preparing students for the industry, but for a well rounded education as well.

~ FIDM Advanced Studies Student

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3 Comments:

Anonymous Stephanie Anne said...

THANK YOU. So on point, I completely agree with you on this. I feel like I don't learn much, but I pay so much and put in hard work, only for many teachers to not even really care. I believe FIDM should hire more credible professors who can actually teach and not just give out assignments to be graded.

January 4, 2012 at 11:46 PM  
Anonymous Benni Harding said...

We appreciate any student taking the time to share an opinion and we do value student concerns. Constructive feedback is key in all good relationships.

We read your blog post and would like to correct some misinformation regarding our competitiveness with other colleges, our instructor’s academic and career qualifications, our students and graduates ability to compete in the workforce with other college graduates, transferable credits of curriculum, as well as the value and quality of a specialized curriculum.

Some examples: In one of the majors, about 70% of the instructors have master's degrees. As a private, for profit college, FIDM is not publicly traded as other colleges that have been negatively profiled recently in the press. As far as transferability of courses, students choose FIDM precisely because of the specialized curriculum which may include courses that are not offered at other colleges. For this reason, some major courses cannot transfer, not because they don't meet baccalaureate requirements, but because there are no equivalent courses existing in the curriculum of other colleges.

As a graduate of FIDM, you have full access to the Alumni Association which offers a Job Search with a dedicated team of Career Advisors who cultivate job leads and assist graduates in launching and evolving their career identities. We're proud to say that over 90% of our graduates (in all majors) who utilize the Career Center find employment within six months of graduation. Also, for peer-to-peer networking opportunities, the Alumni Association has 36 Alumni chapters, as well as the Dialogue alumni magazine, LiveWire newsletter, and other resources, which I hope you'll utilize. FIDM's blueprint is tried and true. If a student does their coursework and takes advantage of all the available resources, they have every opportunity to succeed.

If you have spoken to any administrator and you feel have been disregarded, that is not our intention. Let’s try again.

We would like the opportunity to meet with you in person to address the concerns expressed in your blog post. In regards to complaints of any kind, we have an open door policy here at FIDM. In fact, my door is open to you and any student here at FIDM.

We can assure you, after you meet with appropriate staff members, your pride will be sky high!

Benni Harding
Director of Student Advisement
FIDM/Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising

January 9, 2012 at 5:26 PM  
Anonymous Benni Harding said...

We appreciate any student taking the time to share an opinion and we do value student concerns. Constructive feedback is key in all good relationships.

We read your blog post and would like to correct some misinformation regarding our competitiveness with other colleges, our instructors' academic and career qualifications, our students' and graduates' ability to compete in the workforce with other college graduates, transferable credits of curriculum, as well as the value and quality of a specialized curriculum.

Some examples: In one of the majors, about 70% of the instructors have master's degrees. As a private, for profit college, FIDM is not publicly traded as other colleges that have been negatively profiled recently in the press. As far as transferability of courses, students choose FIDM precisely because of the specialized curriculum which may include courses that are not offered at other colleges. For this reason, some major courses cannot transfer, not because they don't meet baccalaureate requirements, but because there are no equivalent courses existing in the curriculum of other colleges.

As a graduate of FIDM, you have full access to the Alumni Association which offers a Job Search with a dedicated team of Career Advisors who cultivate job leads and assist graduates in launching and evolving their career identities. We're proud to say that over 90% of our graduates (in all majors) who utilize the FIDM Career Center find employment within six months of graduation. Also, for peer-to-peer networking opportunities, the Alumni Association has 36 Alumni chapters, as well as the Dialogue alumni magazine, LiveWire newsletter, and other resources, which I hope you'll utilize. FIDM's blueprint is tried and true. If a student does their coursework and takes advantage of all the available resources, they have every opportunity to succeed.

If you have spoken to any administrator and you feel have been disregarded, that is not our intention. Let’s try again.

We would like the opportunity to meet with you in person to address the concerns expressed in your blog post. In regards to complaints of any kind, we have an open door policy here at FIDM. In fact, my door is open to you and any student here at FIDM.

We can assure you, after you meet with appropriate staff members, your pride will be sky high!

January 9, 2012 at 7:29 PM  

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