Academy of Art University

  www.academyart.edu
  www.academyart.edu

Academy of Art University Reviews

Updated December 19, 2014
Updated December 19, 2014
171 Reviews
2.5
171 Reviews
Rating Trends

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Academy of Art University President Elisa Stephens
Elisa Stephens
101 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Decent pay and standard benefits for new college graduates (in 9 reviews)

  • If you enjoy working in San Francisco, this is a good place to start (in 9 reviews)


Cons
  • This happens because upper management do not know the amount of work that is done at the "ground" level (in 15 reviews)

  • Inability or lack of desire (probably a little bit of both) to make positive change to work environment or morale (in 9 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    Toxic culture

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA

    I worked at Academy of Art University

    Pros

    Working with student artwork, I always got to do interesting projects.
    I had a lot of autonomy.
    I had a good computer workstation.
    Access to online course materials.
    I got to have very good work-life balance to take care of my family.
    AAU was very generous with unpaid leave.
    AAU paid my admission to several industry conferences and trainings.

    Cons

    Culture is more of competition than collaboration, intimidation rather than inspiration.
    AAU management never failed to make bad decisions and ignore expert recommendations.
    Terrible morale among staff.
    Rigid and arbitrary rules because they don't trust employees to act like professional adults.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Trust employees to act like professional adults and most will.
    Hire faculty and management who are experts in the field in which they will work.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  2.  

    Excellent--they let me be creative in my teaching style if I produce results

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Instructor in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Instructor in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at Academy of Art University part-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    I love that they let me be who I am when I teach. I follow the syllabus closely, but teach it in my own way. I like that they don't force you to teach a certain way because it is beneficial to the students to let my professional experience dictate some of the course material.

    Cons

    I feel like regardless of how much I put in to this position (my heart and soul) I will always be part-time. Even teaching 5 classes, spending countless hours grading, and working on creative lesson plans, I will only get paid the $50 for the time I'm spending in the class. I'd love to be salaried and taken better care of in terms of sick-pay, vacation, etc.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Reevaluate how you take care of your part-time instructors. Or perhaps if your PT instructors are really producing results, consider hiring them full time. Reevaluate the Course Reviews. 99% of my students tell me they don't fill them out truthfully and/or don't even read them because the questions are too vague or redundant.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  3.  

    Great Stepping stone but no further.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Academy of Art University part-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Very Relaxed, free time to work on your own work, great stepping stone to pay the bills and work to polish your stuff to move into the industry.

    Cons

    You must know what you're talking about if you are a lab tech.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Management worked well for me.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  4. Is this helpful? The community relies on everyone sharing – Add Anonymous Review


  5.  

    Terrible, Greedy Business model

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Academy of Art University

    Pros

    Doesn't require much effort

    Cons

    Management has to scramble to implement random and fickle changes made by the President and there is no cohesion or love for staff. Everyone who works there looks miserable for good reason.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Focus on actual education and student/staff resources rather than pure profit.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  6.  

    good studio place called 400A

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Academy of Art University

    Pros

    real world experience sundance award winning movies

    Cons

    you do not get paid

  7.  

    Stable, room to grow

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Marketing in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Marketing in San Francisco, CA

    I worked at Academy of Art University

    Pros

    stable company with opportunities in different areas based on your management and skillset

    Cons

    very corporate and can feel constraining especially if expecting to be in a creative culture

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    challenge and don't be afraid to try new things especially when your competition is progressing

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  8.  

    Enjoying my career at AAU

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at Academy of Art University full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    I have worked at AAU full time for over a year and I am very happy here. I really don't understand the negative reviews, perhaps it is just a matter of having the right attitude.

    Cons

    The work environment is slightly more conservative than I initially expected, but this is an educational environment so I understand why it is that way.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9.  

    MPT LAB TECH

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - MPT Edit Lab Technician in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - MPT Edit Lab Technician in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at Academy of Art University as a contractor (more than an year)

    Pros

    low stress, no real work, can just watch movies all day and get paid

    Cons

    bad managment that discourages their staff to CREATE ART despite it being an art school.

    I've invested 280,000 into this university which is enough to pay the minmum wage sallaries of every one in my department for an entire year

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Pay your employees a living wage before they cut your throats while you sleep.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  10.  

    Great place to work in a collaborative environment

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at Academy of Art University full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    World class organization, excellent benefits including a free class every semester! Lots of room for growth and movement within the university. They put a large emphasis on training and setting employees up for success.

    Cons

    This is not the place for you if you aren't willing to work to get what you want, things will not be handed to you.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Continue providing your employees with interactive training and guiding and being communicative with feedback.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11.  

    I can't judge the rest of the school, but working in admissions is terrible

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Academy of Art University

    Pros

    A few standout individuals made the job tolerable. It was a great location to work in, and I think the school itself provides a good education.

    Cons

    The admissions environment is stressful and unpleasant. Administrators micromanage their employees, suspicion and distrust are rampant, and few take pride in working there.

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