Animation Mentor Graduates First Class


School That Combines Next Generation Technologies and Social Networking Welcomes Largest Class Since Inaugural Session

Last Updated: September 25, 2006 4:41 pm GMT
(BERKELEY, Calif.--BUSINESS WIRE) Animation Mentor, the online animation school that combines next generation technologies with social networking, is graduating its first-ever class September 25, 2006, President and co-founder Bobby S. Beck announced today.

One hundred fifty-four animators from 23 countries have completed their studies at the innovative school, where all of the instructors are working studio animators. They earned a diploma in Advanced Studies in Character Animation from the California Bureau for Private Postsecondary and Vocational Education. The new graduates will bring their passion, creativity and positive outlook to an industry experiencing meteoric growth, with more animated motion pictures being produced than ever before.

At the same time, Animation Mentor is welcoming its largest class since the inaugural group of students came aboard in March 2005. Today, 156 aspiring animators from 26 countries are beginning their first term at the school.

“We wanted to train a new breed of animators with the skills, passion and attitude to create great, lasting performances,” said Beck. “Our first graduation, coupled with this landmark class, is a big milestone, and proof that we have built an online experience that is personal and fulfilling and that achieves our educational goals.”

Several graduates have already landed employment at major Hollywood studios, with the help of reels they created at Animation Mentor. Graduates in the job market will benefit from the school’s new alumni site ( ), which not only hosts comprehensive career services, events and learning experiences, but also enables members to continue to participate in the Animation Mentor community they built.

Animation Mentor graduates completed a six-term (18-month) program that includes live, interactive Q&A sessions/classes led by mentors who work at PIXAR, Sony, DreamWorks, and more; eCritiques™ in which mentors provide personal audio-visual critiques of weekly assignments; rich media instruction from pre-eminent animators; and combination live/virtual improvisation classes. They also partake in a thriving, 24-hour animation community enabled by the school site. In addition to personal profile pages, forums, buddy lists and virtual events, they view each other’s coursework and tests, find fellow countrymen attending the school, and turn to each other for feedback and support.

A formal ceremony honoring the September and December 2006 graduates will be held in San Francisco, January 13, 2006.

Based in Berkeley, California, Animation Mentor is a distance learning school at which top working professionals teach the art of character animation to students worldwide. Opened March 2005, the school offers an eighteen-month program built from the ground up by its founders, Bobby Beck, Shawn Kelly and Carlos Baena whose combined credits include CARS, FINDING NEMO and STAR WARS: EPISODE 3. Animation Mentor’s California-certified curriculum includes student mentoring; expert audio/video lectures; live, real-time Q&A sessions (web classes); eCritiques™ and 24/7 creative community. More information at:


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