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Suggestions for minors?

My major is fine arts with a concentration in digital media with the hopes of becoming an animator. I was curious what kind of minor I should take to accompany it or if I should take one at all. #college #college-major #art #college-minor

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Kim’s Answer

Hi Deanna!

I think you should think about what direction you want to go with your animation, and minor in that, if you minor at all.

For example, if you think you want to design educational material for children, you could minor in education, or a related field. If you want to take it to a higher level, you could minor in anatomy, biology, or one of the sciences. I would love to see an animated explanation of how autoimmune diseases (lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, etc) work against the body. I've had illnesses for ten years, and still don't understand it! An animated version would really help me to comprehend! Animation is also used in re-creating situations in court proceedings! Example: how far across the street was the pedestrian before being struck by the car? There is software that does that! In which case, perhaps a bit of legal familiarity would be an advantage.

You could also look at marketing, business, or management, especially if you have aspirations of having your own business.

I think the key in selecting a minor is to select something that complements the major, without being redundant.

Hope this helps!


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Ken’s Answer

Congratulations on being interested in finding the right career to follow and which major and minor to consider. It takes a special person to enter into a specific career field and meet the demands which that career area presents. The first step is to get to know yourself to see if you share the personality traits which make that make one successful in that area. The next step is doing networking to meet and talk to and possibly shadow people doing what you might think that you want to do to see if this is something that you really want to do, as a career area could look much different on the inside than it looks from the outside. When I was doing college recruiting, I encountered too many students, who skipped these important steps, and ended up in a career/job for which they were ill suited.

Ken recommends the following next steps:

The first step is to take an interest and aptitude test and have it interpreted by your school counselor to see if you share the personality traits necessary to enter the field. You might want to do this upon entry into college, as the interpretation might differ slightly due to the course offering of the school. However, do not wait until entering college, as the information from the test will help to determine the courses that you take in high school. Too many students, due to poor planning, end up paying for courses in college which they could have taken for free in high school.
Next, when you have the results of the testing, talk to the person at your high school and college who tracks and works with graduates to arrange to talk to, visit, and possibly shadow people doing what you think that you might want to do, so that you can get know what they are doing and how they got there. Here are some tips: ## http://www.wikihow.com/Network ## ## https://www.themuse.com/advice/nonawkward-ways-to-start-and-end-networking-conversations https://www.themuse.com/advice/4-questions-to-ask-your-network-besides-can-you-get-me-a-job?ref=carousel-slide-1 ##
Locate and attend meetings of professional associations to which people who are doing what you think that you want to do belong, so that you can get their advice. These associations may offer or know of intern, coop, shadowing, and scholarship opportunities. These associations are the means whereby the professionals keep abreast of their career area following college and advance in their career. Here are some tips: ## https://www.careeronestop.org/BusinessCenter/Toolkit/find-professional-associations.aspx?&frd=true ## ## https://www.themuse.com/advice/9-tips-for-navigating-your-first-networking-event ##
It is very important to express your appreciation to those who help you along the way to be able to continue to receive helpful information and to create important networking contacts along the way. Here are some good tips: ## https://www.themuse.com/advice/the-informational-interview-thank-you-note-smart-people-know-to-send?ref=recently-published-2 ## ## https://www.themuse.com/advice/3-tips-for-writing-a-thank-you-note-thatll-make-you-look-like-the-best-candidate-alive?bsft_eid=7e230cba-a92f-4ec7-8ca3-2f50c8fc9c3c&bsft_pid=d08b95c2-bc8f-4eae-8618-d0826841a284&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=daily_20171020&utm_source=blueshift&utm_content=daily_20171020&bsft_clkid=edfe52ae-9e40-4d90-8e6a-e0bb76116570&bsft_uid=54658fa1-0090-41fd-b88c-20a86c513a6c&bsft_mid=214115cb-cca2-4aec-aa86-92a31d371185&bsft_pp=2 ##

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Michael’s Answer

Hi Deanna, I'm not an animator, but I do have a few friends who are and will confirm that the commercial animation industry follows most of the same expectations for employment as my corner, and many other corners, of commercial art. Basically, your portfolio and demonstrable skills will define your employ-ability more than your degrees. One option that you may want to consider is, especially if adding a minor decreases your time and money resources, don't get a minor and, instead, use those resources on improving your animation. For example, find atelier style training or other means of self-directed practice to further improve your knowledge of anatomy and movement.

There are many paths you could take with animation and my advice may not be the best for all of them. I can only approach the subject from the perspective of a commercial artist, but it's really up to you.

Michael recommends the following next steps:

Decide what you want to do as an animator.
If you want to work as a commercial artist (i.e. for video games or film), consider using the resources you would devote to obtaining a minor to improving your animation instead.
Look for or create resources to learn more, practice more, and improve your practical application of animation.
Make a great portfolio that demonstrates what you can do.

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David’s Answer


I recommend a business class. You will need to know contracts, costing, copy write and legal applications. The arts are great but they are a business. In the long run knowing the business side will save you money.

As an example on the costing side, how much will you be spending on subscription every month, will you need to be connected to the net away from your work space? Computer upgrades, cloud storage need to be figured into as part of you cost. Chances are you will be handling your own bills and billing.

You don't have to be an expert just have a basic grasp of business.

No doubt. Wherever you get it from, basic business knowledge will help you out. Michael Jenkins