Tribeca Flashpoint College

www.tribecaflashpoint.edu
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Tribeca Flashpoint College Reviews

Updated July 22, 2015
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15 Employee Reviews

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  1. Great Team

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

    I have been working at Tribeca Flashpoint College full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Great new senior management team, whom I feel is taking the school in an exciting direction. There is an overall strong sense of collaboration among staff members.

    Cons

    Communication can always be improved and there could be a stronger culture between all employees.

    Advice to Management

    Keep developing opportunities for growth and strengthening communication.


  2. High turnover, low work/life balance.

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

    I worked at Tribeca Flashpoint College full-time

    Doesn't Recommend
    Doesn't Recommend

    Pros

    The students and the faculty are very dedicated and loyal. The previous CEO was someone who really believed in the school and what it was doing, but now the company culture has changed. It's in a great location downtown too.

    Cons

    There is no professional development. What you are hired for is what you will be for a long time unless you create an entirely different position. Ideas are shut down, there is no work/life balance (especially in terms of flex hours that are offered - they have to work for the management and not both the employee and the school). High turnover rate. They also had a pretty large layoff a few years ago, including some people who had been there for a long time and new employees. It is becoming like a business than a school. Did not feel valued as an employee.

    Advice to Management

    Take into consideration hiring from within and working with people for their professional development. Really listen to what your employees need. Be honest and upfront about what the positions entail. Work with employees to make things better instead of just putting them down. Talk to all staff before making big and hasty transitions/decisions.


  3. Great Team, Great Environment

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

    I have been working at Tribeca Flashpoint College

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    TFC is a great work environment - fast-paced, autonomous, with clear direction and sense of shared purpose. CEO is pushing the company into exciting new areas. Impressed by intelligence and drive of my colleagues. I feel supported, but not coddled - expectation is that you work hard, play nice, and contribute to the best of your abilities. Saw team members promoted into new, growing part of the organization this year - and size of that team doubled in just the last couple of months. Company is focused on its customers (the students) and making sure they are educated by top-notch instructors and land good jobs when they graduate.

    Cons

    Nothing to report so far.

    Advice to Management

    Keep developing opportunities for growth.


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  5. Great Employees, Wonderful Students, Spectacular Supervisor!

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Management - Student Services in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Management - Student Services in Chicago, IL

    I have been working at Tribeca Flashpoint College

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    Wonderful group of intelligent individuals to work for. Very knowledgeable about the industry and willing to assist other employees without a problem at all. I felt welcomed the moment I started working at Tribeca. Tribeca is making positive changes for the employees, faculty, staff, and students.

    Cons

    I have nothing negative to say. I am learning and growing as a professional.

    Advice to Management

    N/A


  6. Highly intelligent group of professionals!

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Management in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Management in Chicago, IL

    I have been working at Tribeca Flashpoint College full-time (Less than a year)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Employees are treated like professionals and they value everyone's point of view. If you have a strong work ethic, can perform your job independently as well as work with others, it's a great environment!

    Cons

    Communication can always be improved but staff actually try to keep the communication open.

    Advice to Management

    Keep encouraging open communication and know that staff appreciate the flexibility and relaxed environment.


  7. Helpful (1)

    Job or career? Depends on you.

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

    I have been working at Tribeca Flashpoint College full-time (More than 5 years)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    I've been at TFA for nearly 6 years, and in that time I've experienced a lot of changes: changes to ownership, name, management, staff, mission, and attitude. This is not the school I started working at in 2009. But if I had to make the choice to work here all over again, I believe that I would. First, the benefits: as a long time employee, I get 17 days off per year. Our insurance is great. We have a 401k (no matching yet) and at least some of us get to take advantage of training stipends. But more than anything, the greatest benefit is getting to work with this amazing group of people. I thank my lucky stars every day that we've made largely right hiring (and firing) choices over the years to assemble a team that is as honest, helpful, and hardworking as you could ever hope for. If there's one thing that we do right (other than education), it's that. Now, the qualities that thrive here: I've found that being assertive is key in this institution. If you don't like the way something is being done, you have to speak up. No one's going to come asking. In all my time here, that's probably the only thing that hasn't changed. Decisions are made, plans are executed, and then we're on to the next thing. If you can't keep up, you'll burn out; but that doesn't mean you can't take a minute to evaluate what you're doing and raise concerns where appropriate--or that you're not welcome (and indeed expected) to do so. As a non-manager, I've never had the experience of being shut down when I present a concern to management. To to contrary, I've always found that my suggestions are heard and that my input is seriously considered. This is an important part of achieving job satisfaction--if you don't feel listened to, you can't feel like a valuable part of the team. But in order to be heard you have to speak up, and in my experience here many people are either too scared or too jaded to do so. The majority of those who don't succeed at TFA are the ones who complain in dark corners and stir the pot without raising their voice--or their hands--to help bring about positive change. And that's an environment that works for no one. In short, I think the staff and faculty would be wise to consider their time at TFA as an opportunity to get out what you put in. If you work hard and are a helpful person, there's a good chance you'll have a great experience, and walk away each day feeling positive about the contributions you've made. But if you're just looking for a job where you can just "punch your card" every afternoon or sit quietly while the business works around you, then get a job somewhere else. You're not needed.

    Cons

    Honestly, pay and opportunities for career advancement aren't what they would be outside of education. My hunch is that we lose good people to better paying gigs with growth potential more than anything else. If we want to get real progressive about it, I think there could also be better work from home benefits, better maternity/paternity benefits, and better time off for new hires. It's not a perks-heavy company, but if loving where you work is important to you, you might not mind so much.

    Advice to Management

    Several reviews have indicated that TFA is "scattered" or "disorganized." While I don't think it's any more disorganized or scattered than your typical seven-year-old business that's undergone constant change since inception, there's certainly room for improvement. I agree that there are a few key positions that were either eliminated or never filled in the first place that would ease the burden many of us feel. I believe we sometimes have a pacing issue as well: some things move too fast while other things move too slow. If we could sync up better (possibly by adding personnel) and have better communication overall, we'd be in a much better place.


  8. Innovative school that delivers on its promises

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

    I have been working at Tribeca Flashpoint College full-time (More than a year)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    The educational model is extremely effective--as evidenced by ~90% student retention rates and 75%+ job placement rates--so you feel good about where you work. Also, the CEO who took over in 2012 has fostered a culture in which employees are given lots of opportunities to innovate and build things from the ground up. It is also a low-drama culture with virtually NO bureaucracy or red tape; if you have a sound idea, you are empowered to implement it almost immediately. Finally, casual dress is always a plus!!

    Cons

    Like any small to moderate-sized organization, there are not always opportunities for formal advancement in the way of titles, management responsibilities etc. But the fact that employees are always so empowered to develop their own special projects/initiatives provides an alternative form of professional development. Also, the CEO has many exciting business expansion efforts in the works right now, so there will likely be an increasing number of formal advancement opportunities for employees.

    Advice to Management

    Continue to work on regular communications with employees--such as the all staff meetings, the new staff newsletter, etc. With so many new initiatives in the works, regular communication will be key.


  9. Helpful (1)

    Still Primitive, not Innovative

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Administration in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Administration in Chicago, IL

    I have been working at Tribeca Flashpoint College full-time (More than 3 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    Key amount of individuals that work really hard at the institution. The key people who are hold themselves accountable, communicate with other departments, and do what's best to improve the institution, rather than inflate their ego.

    Cons

    Lack of accountability from the top down. As crazy as it sounds, it is as primitive as reading and following up on emails. Communication should be constant and from all departments. Departments need to document procedures and fully explain them and consult with other areas that may be impacted. There is a constant figure it out mentatility, and if you don't, we will blame you. A few key positions that were eliminated and never back-filled caused the burden on other departments or other key roles. Coupled with other departments constantly hiring but not being held accountable, this does not improve employee morale or the chance of additional turnover. Hiring and promotion of friends creates silos at the institution and creates an non diversification of opinions. Standardization to scalable - major resistance to making processes easier and making things harder than they need to be. A lot of experienced people in the field of education would compare TFA operationally very different from the rest of post-secondary education, mainly for the worst. A lot of changes have taken place in recent years: changes in ownership, management, staff, mission, and curriculum. The hallways of TFA best describe the lack of cohesiveness, efficiency, and lack of identity at TFA. Millions of dollars were spent on decorative lights, wallpaper, quotes, and a futuristic look that mimics a scene from the Matrix movies, but the lack of common theme or flow is non-existent, which is irony, best describes the mask and operation that exists at TFA. While some of the changes have experienced a positive yield, there is still constant conflict that exists between key departments at the institution, more than what I have seen in prior experience. Academics tries to bully Admissions in who they can enroll or not and programs they can offer without all the complete information. Admissions does not communicate to Academics critical and correct information in enrollment projections. Admissions and Marketing blame Financial Aid for not packaging students in a timely manner. Finally, key departments are not involved or consulted in decisions made in meetings. There is a key amount of individuals that work really hard at the institution and really is the highlight of the institution. In fact, most of them wind up repeating their daily tasks over and over again because either incorrect or incomplete information is passed on or the lack of accountability by their managers or colleagues. This formal lack of accountability, leads to individuals taking advantage of the system. Some departments are hardly visible or present at work because their department head approves excessive PTO, has been the ongoing joke at the institution. Procedures and policies have to be constantly explained and reiterated because people are not being accountable. Key people during start week are not present, and when people are needed in critical times, they are on vacation and fail to inform anyone or have backups contacts in place. The institution emphasizes doing what's best for the student, but in reality, it is more egotistical and selfish in nature. People are promoted without any formal communication that goes out or sufficient experience. There is lack of experience that exists in key roles of Academics, that have made detrimental or critical mistakes that have impacted other departments time and time again. In response to the last review, there are a lot of people at the institution that want to make the job a career but are constantly left to the point where their opinions do not matter or find that they are working harder than others, which does not yield a positive outlook for the day, if they are not reaping the benefits. You can speak up, but in more situations that not, your opinions will not be considered until the damage has already occurred, or your manager is your best friend who hired or promoted you.

    Advice to Management

    Set an example for your employees to follow and that is consistent with all departments. Invest in organizational development that will help correct the flaws we have currently at the institution to improve the future. Promote a work-life balance that is consistent across the institution, not just some departments who have an uneven work load compared to others.


  10. Helpful (2)

    Frustrating Environment for Employees and Students

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Tribeca Flashpoint College

    Pros

    -Many of the students are great to work with. -Leading students toward their career goals is very rewarding. -Teaching is a wonderful experience.

    Cons

    - Decision are dictated by the seniority of the person suggesting, not how good the idea is - List of responsibilities for a position, is dwarfed by the actual requirements of the job - Students are treated like small children not college students - HR / Recruiting leadership is completely toxic - Curriculum/Classes/Programs are sold before they are written - Expertise of subject experts are ignored over politics - Ridiculous management decisions must be defended by staff to students - Honest feedback is not encouraged, toe the company line or be ostracized - Admissions process is a sham, can the student pay and are they not a physical threat, you are in.

    Advice to Management

    - Listen to your industry experts, that is what you hire them for - Profitability should not be the priority over students, just because you are a "for profit" school - Create actual standards for admissions - Banish the word "mandatory"


  11. Helpful (1)

    To quote Gordan Gecko: Greed is not good. Management (staff) has no stake in the company.

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

    I have been working at Tribeca Flashpoint College full-time (More than 5 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    Pros

    Faculty are incredible at what they do and how they teach. The Staff (outside admin and higher ups) are great folks. The security guards are awesome and friendly.

    Cons

    A sad tail in management. In the first couple years of the school opening, Howard Tullman and his over-staffed staff burned money like crazy, with all sorts of promotions to get the school noticed. It's all well and good until you're paying for high-price real-estate at Daley Plaza. Howard would buy a ballroom on Lasalle without consulting the sound department for Accoustics. It was a cave and nothing could really be done in there. So it sat there on our rent. Soon boredom must of came in and higher-ups mandating bonuses for themselves (their no longer with the company) and just overspending like crazy, eventually Howard jumped off with his Golden Parachute. He even sent the school staff/faculty one of his blogs "When it's time to leave a failing business" right before he left. Up to this moment there was hints of hurting financially with meetings where the staff would tell the faculty "just get as many seats filled as possible". Tribeca came into the picture to hold the place a float and finally Sterling. Howard jumped ship and handed us to Sterling. Personally the man was cold and as much as he wants to be the next Steve Jobs he's left a legacy of running out of buildings on fire that he set a flame. Sterling, known for slashing jobs, improving facilities for a resale, then reselling the schools came in. They did just that. At first it was positive. Sterling looked like a company that could get the place back on track. And they did a first initial layoff of staff which was needed (lot of fat). But then they started cutting fat and then eventually flesh, until they cut the heart off of the company. Bringing us down to the likes of Illinois Institute of Art. The best faculty where cut and the remaining's contracts where lowered. I wouldn't be surprised if they cut even more soon. I don't know if they're merciless or desperate. THE ENTIRE ADMIN FLOOR TURNED INTO A GHOST TOWN. Everyone was getting fired, and their work was thrown in the lap of others left who eventually left because of the overwork burden. It was the greatest exodus I've ever seen. Most of the folks at Sterling are not evil, they're just faceless drones told to make the place profitable, if it even means cutting it down to nothing but a sign outside the front of the building. Honestly it was sad. I, like the others, wanted so much to make this school successful and reputable. And we "did our best" when Sterling would pull a last minute fast one. ACICS will be doing an audit in October, they won't have to look hard to find that Sterling has pulled enough stunts and broken student contracts all over the place with abundant changes to the curriculum. I personally had to deal with apologizing for the staff/administration for illegal merges of concentrations, sudden changes in classes, to the students. This ship is sinking slowly like the titanic yet the band is still playing on the deck. The economy and job market in film, game, visual effects and viscom (graphics design) is pathetic as well.

    Advice to Management

    Be a farmer and do/earn an honest job. You said you wanted to know what we do, but you kept your distance, and fired people who you didn't even realize till it was too late, where imperative to the operations of the school. At a level that is almost sadly comical. The faculty IS your school. Not your fancy facilities that you updated to make the place look good on the outside. TO STERLING: you better stop your shenanigans and pull back on your last minute antics, because the faculty are ALL making plans to leave the school. And do you blame them, you folks have shown time and time again to NOT KNOW WHAT YOU ARE DOING. As one teacher once said to me, Schizophrenic nature of the school. When that happens, you'll start to get sub-par hacks for faculty and then say goodbye to your investment, but looks like you're looking to resell us by then anyway, so what does it matter. Education's downfall is from folks like you.



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