Are you a veteran returning to civilian life or a member of a veteran’s family aiming to avail yourself of entitlements and benefits? This article is designed to help you navigate your options for taking advantage of these services to enter into a professional skills training program and learn the Animation skills you’ve always wanted to learn. Animation skills are used in various industries, including film and television, video games, and advertising, and can open the door to many job opportunities.
What is Animation?
Animation is the process of photographing a still image—typically a drawing—then making slight modifications to the image while taking successive pictures. An animator will rapidly show these pictures to make it appear as if the image is moving. Animation skills are great to have in many different jobs. Animators don’t just create movies or television shows. They also create moving graphics for websites, video games, or visual effects. Most animators now use software to create the graphics, though some still use drawings and sketches to bring their imagination to life.
Read more about what animation is and why you should learn it.
What Can You Do with Animation Skills?
Learning animation opens doors to different fields. The most obvious field is filmmaking: producing visual effects, developing computer-generated special effects, or creating images for any media type. Movies, television, the internet, and (video) games all rely on Animators for their products. Yet, Animators can also work as Medical or Mathematical Animators, Illustrators, Games Developers, and VFX Artists. Illustrators focus on still images, both hand-drawn and computer-generated, while Medical or Mathematical Animators, Games Developers, and VFX Artists develop 3D moving images. After Effects and Premiere Pro are the go-to animation software for professionals.
Support for Veterans
Veterans are entitled to various educational benefits designed to help them transition to civil life. In the United States, thousands of active-duty service members leave the military every year and become veterans. In some cases, the extensive skill set that these veterans have gained in the military is not widely recognized by other employers, and it can be challenging to find another job. A researcher for the Rand Corporation explains, “To the extent that military skills do not translate easily to the civilian world, obtaining additional education could help veterans gain skills that are more easily recognized in the civilian labor market.”
Educational benefits for veterans are guaranteed under the GI Bill. The first GI Bill was enacted after World War II to help the millions of veterans returning to civilian life. Since then, there have been a number of updates. The most recent GI Bill is called the Post-9/11 GI Bill, and it was signed in 2008. Under the Post-9/11 Bill, eligible veterans can get a number of educational benefits, including money for tuition, books, and living expenses. The Forever GI Bill, signed in 2012, improved or expanded some of the benefits of the 2008 bill.
Specific benefit amounts depend on many factors, including how long a veteran served and what type of school the benefits are being used for. Veterans can transfer some benefits of the GI Bill to a spouse or children.
According to the U.S. Department of Defense, the GI Bill has changed the lives of hundreds of thousands of Americans. It says, “The GI Bill is considered one of the most significant pieces of federal legislation ever produced.” The agency reports that since 2009, the Department of Veterans Affairs has distributed more than $12 million in benefits to veterans and their families.
A number of different Noble Desktop classes have been approved for the training of veterans and other eligible persons. For example, the Video Editing and Motion Graphics Certificate is on the list of approved classes and includes extensive instruction in animation techniques. To explore your options for VA-supported programs through Noble Desktop, please visit their Veterans Support page.
Why Learn Animation
Animation has the potential to lead to many different job opportunities since it is used in a wide range of large industries. These include the video game industry, marketing, filmmaking, and television production. Some specific examples of animation jobs include: working on marketing content for social media, designing animated logos and text, and producing animated content for training simulations.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Animators and Special Effects Artists have a stable job outlook for the next ten years, with employment expected to increase by about 5 percent, roughly the same as the average growth rate. The Bureau also reports that while many Animators work in offices, a significant percentage are self-employed.
Learning animation skills can lead to many employment opportunities. However, some people discover these new skills and also give them a fulfilling creative outlet. Animation involves a lot of creativity, and there is evidence that being creative has a range of health benefits. It has been found to reduce stress and anxiety and improve mental health and well-being. For instance, in a recent investigation, researchers conducted two studies to understand the effect of creativity on subjective well-being. They found a significant relationship between the two and concluded, “Individuals can improve their subjective well-being by fostering and strengthening their creativity.”
Why Choose a Skills Bootcamp?
Veterans who want to learn about animation will quickly discover that there are various ways to do so. Some people enroll at a four-year university, a path that students have often been encouraged to follow in the past. However, in recent years, an increasing number of students are opting for bootcamps and certificate programs instead. These programs are cheaper and take less time to complete, but there is evidence that they may even be a more effective way to get a job.
A four-year degree–the traditional way to get an education–is comprehensive but very expensive. The National Center for Education Statistics reports that attending a four-year university can cost between $25,000 and $55,000 per year. For many people, four years is also a lot of time to spend in school.
In contrast, a bootcamp or certificate program can be much quicker to complete and cost a lot less money. While costs vary, tuition for most bootcamps or certificates is around $10,000, significantly less than a college education. Further, these programs often take around six months or less to finish. Noble Desktop runs several bootcamps and certificate programs that include training in animation. For example, the Motion Graphics Certificate covers a range of animation skills and takes less than six months to finish. Noble’s After Effects Bootcamp takes students through basic and advanced skills in this popular animation program, which participants can complete in a matter of weeks.
LinkedIn researchers recently compared employment outcomes for coding bootcamp graduates and university graduates. They found that employment rates were similar between the two groups and sometimes even higher for the bootcamp graduates. They conclude that although a university degree might be necessary for someone who intends to go on to pursue an advanced degree such as a Master’s, “Those looking to enter the workforce more quickly or who are enrolling for career training purposes may have a better chance of landing a tech job after their program with top coding bootcamps.”
Learn Animation at Noble Desktop
Many experts agree that animation is much easier to learn when taken either in a live online class or in person. Noble Desktop provides animation classes in both formats. Class sizes are small, and instructors can give students plenty of attention and feedback.
In just a few days, students can learn how to use Adobe After Effects in Noble Desktop's bootcamp. This class is ideal for people new to the field of animation and motion design. Those with more time can learn what it takes to become an Animator in Noble’s comprehensive Motion Graphics Certificate course. This class teaches animation with After Effects, video editing with Premiere Pro, and audio editing with Audition.
- Taking an animation class can help veterans gain access to an increased number of job opportunities.
- Animation skills are used in a wide range of industries.
- Under the GI Bill, veterans are entitled to money to cover the cost of college or training programs.
- Animation is a creative activity and can be good for mental health.
- Bootcamps and certificate programs are cheaper and take less time than a four-year college degree.
- Noble Desktop offers a variety of training programs for veterans interested in learning about animation.