SHSU computer animation program ranked Top 100 in nation

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Sam Houston State University’s computer animation program has received recognition as a part of the Animation Career Review’s 2014 “Top 100 Animation Programs in the United States.”

Labeled 81 in the U.S., and sixth in the Southwest, SHSU’s program ranks among elite programs including University of Southern California, Loyola Marymount University, University of Texas at Dallas and Syracuse University.

Although the computer animation program has existed for only eight years, the national exposure of professors Edward Ramsay-Mortin and Willie Williams has helped expand the program with various students finding their work accepted for national festivals as well.

“This is the first year that the SHSU computer animation program submitted to be considered for this ranking,” Ramsay-Mortin said in an interview with Today @ Sam. “So not only were we excited to be included, we were equally excited at the rankings we received these rankings speak to the strength of our program, which is still evolving.”

Ramsay-Morin and Williams recently exhibited three of their original works in San Francisco in front of the American Society for Independent Film Animators’ “Spring Shows.” Of the 31 short-films selected, Williams’s “Our Legacy” and Ramsay-Morin’s “As Dreams Sometimes Do,” and “In Between Here and There” were selected.

Ramsay-Mortin said in an interview with Today @ Sam having their films chosen by the ASIFA “represents an acknowledgement of our creative research by our peers.”

“Getting a film selected in a film festival is a wondrous prestige, because these exhibitions are so competitive,” Williams said to Today @ Sam. “It is a great avenue for getting one’s name out there to the animation community and the world, since films from all over the globe [are] showcased.”

From Williams and Ramsay-Morin’s success, both professors have encouraged students within the computer animation field at SHSU to display their projects throughout Huntsville and department-sponsored festivals.

“More of our students are getting into student festivals all over the country; we have also had more students getting internships and jobs post-graduation,” Williams said. “In my opinion, I believe the ranking says that we have something good going on down here in Huntsville.”