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BYU’s award-winning Center for Animation is on the move

Brigham Young University President Cecil O. Samuelson has approved the move of the Center for Animation from the Ira A. Fulton College of Engineering and Technology to the College of Physical and Mathematical Sciences.

This move will connect students more closely with the Computer Science Department, according to center director Brent Adams, who views the move as essential for continued quality. As part of the move, a new lab and theater will be constructed in the Talmage Building. The animation major will still be directed by the College of Fine Arts and Communications.

“We have been overwhelmed over the years at the support from the Ira A. Fulton College of Engineering and Technology,” Adams said. “Without their support these past 10 years, we never would have been able to create the animation major or the Center for Animation. The administration, staff and faculty in that college have been amazing in their sacrifices for these students.”

The animation major has grown rapidly with the help of  faculty, and so has the program’s recognition. In 2011, the center won another College Television Award (Student Emmy) from the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Foundation, totaling 11 “Student Emmys” over eight years. The students have additionally entered their films in professional festivals and have continued on to work for large film studios around the world after graduation.

Motion picture studios DreamWorks Animation SKG and Digital Domain are meeting with BYU animation professors this week as part of their regular mentoring, an exclusive service offered only to the BYU animation program.

This week the mentors will specifically advise BYU professors on current technology such as video conferencing, 3-D tools and state-of-the-art audio/video delivery systems.

BYU faculty will travel to Pixar in a couple of weeks for the same purpose. Both Pixar and DreamWorks, as well as other studios — including Disney, Sony, Microsoft, Chair and General Motors — heavily support the students in BYU’s animation program.

“As the animation industry continues to change how they make movies and games, it has become apparent that to maintain our successful status we needed to increase our interaction with computer science,” said Adams. “This move allows us to explore new ways to teach and prepare students for their future.”

More information regarding the Center for Animation is available on the web at animation.byu.edu.



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Peter Jones, Aaron Ludwig, Tyler Carter, Michael Murdock, Brent Adams, Moy Parra and Gina Chu at the student Emmy awards ceremony.
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