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Affordable Film Programs in California

thedreamydaisythedreamydaisy 148 replies4 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
My S20 is a junior in high school and is looking for a film making/production degree in college. He is definitely a homebody and would like to stay in California (we live in the Bay Area about an hour from San Francisco). He currently has an UW 3.72 GPA and is taking the ACT in April and SAT in May (hoping for scores around 30 ACT and 1300 SAT).

Cost is a big issue for us. I estimate our EFC will be around $15,000 and, yet, when I run the NPCs at places like LMU or Chapman, there is still a huge gap of about $30-40K.

What in state public schools would be good to look at for film? We could maybe afford a UC school but even that would be a stretch since the total cost looks to be about $30K per year and I'm not sure they offer much in the way of merit or need-based aid. A CS school would be better cost wise, but not sure if any have better names in regards to film programs available.
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Replies to: Affordable Film Programs in California

  • ProfessorPlum168ProfessorPlum168 3981 replies86 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    SFSU has a pretty good cinema program from what I understand. One of my tenants is in that program and seems to be happy with it.
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  • thedreamydaisythedreamydaisy 148 replies4 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    @ProfessorPlum168 I like SFSU from a location and cost perspective. I took a peek at their Cinema major but it seems much less hands on (more criticism of film than making films), but they do also have a Broadcast and Electronic Media degree that seems more hands on with production classes. Might be a bit more practical too for job placement once he graduates. We will definitely make sure it's on our list (I think it would be a safety as his grades are definitely good enough and he could even live at home and commute if we really needed to save on costs).
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  • CU123CU123 3540 replies65 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Solid California in state for film would be in this order:
    UCSB
    CSULB
    CSUNR
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  • thedreamydaisythedreamydaisy 148 replies4 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    @CU123 thanks for the list!
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  • ProfessorPlum168ProfessorPlum168 3981 replies86 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    According to the Hollywood Reporter, SFSU has been in the top 25 list of top film schools over the last few years. Their Film School enrollment also has ballooned by 50% in the last few years.

    https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/lists/top-25-american-film-schools-ranked-1134785/item/2018-top-25-film-schools-usc-1134784
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  • CU123CU123 3540 replies65 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    That's true but the 3 I mentioned are all rated higher then SFSU for film studies. I imagine they are all about the same price.
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  • thedreamydaisythedreamydaisy 148 replies4 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    UCSB would be about $10k more per year versus a California State school. But it would also be a reach school from a grade / score perspective. I think she should still apply there and also UCSC which has a decent film/video program and would be less of a reach.
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  • thedreamydaisythedreamydaisy 148 replies4 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    Ooops - meant "he" should still apply there :)
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  • jss9395jss9395 60 replies0 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    What you want to look for is a BFA if you can that will be more production focused. Also look for the term film production rather than film studies.

    Check out CSU Northridge and CSU Long Beach. Those were my DS’s back up choices to Chapman.

    But don’t completely write Chapman off. I have a daughter there and sending a son in the fall. They have been amazingly generous with financial aid beyond the online presictor. For us the out of pocket is quite simialar to a CSU/UC because there we would be paying full boat. And having graduated from a CSU myself it’s often difficult to graduate in four years while st Chapman it almost guaranteed.

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  • thedreamydaisythedreamydaisy 148 replies4 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    @jss9395 Thank you for your comments - we have both CSU Northridge and Long Beach on his list and I will take a closer look at Chapman. We are looking deep into majors at each place to find those with BFAs and production concentrations. He's quite drawn to Oregon State University at the moment which has a BFA in Digital Media with a Production Concentration. Not sure of affordability although it looks like he qualifies for their Golden State Scholarship based on GPA, and the cost of room and board there (if he shares a triple room) is less than half the cost of any California school so that may make it doable.
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