(Academy of Entertainment and Technology Overview)
Jim Keeshen's "Great Big Show"   [Go to: ABOUT JIM KEESHEN]
AET Themed Entertainment Certificate
While AET chairman Jim Keeshen was involved in setting up the curriculum and pushing the Theme Park Major to the unsuspecting public back in 1998, he was fully aware that this program was in fact not a reliable source of income for AET students to count on. By April 1999, the Themed Entertainment Major has vanished from AET's curriculum, although promising courses in accounting, business, math, and computer information systems. Read More ...  [TOP]
AET's Degrees of Deception   [Go to: INTERNSHIP & HIRE RECORDS]
AET Slogan - Need to Know
It is apparent that the Academy did mislead students about the salary potential and availability of jobs in the entertainment field as shown in their actual job and internship placement documents and their questionable connections to the entertainment businesses and industries by and through their industry partnerships. Did AET falsely advertise in violation of the Federal Trade Commission's stringent guidelines? Read More ...  [TOP]

AET's Questionable Vocational Career Certificates   [Go to: INDUSTRY PARTNER CHART]
AET Entertainment Business Certificate
If the curriculum is "reviewed annually" and "designed to meet industry needs," it seems that the Entertainment Business major would have been revised and courses would be filled as entertainment business and accounting are necessary jobs in the industry. However, by December 2001, this major has vanished just like the Themed Entertainment one. Moreover, AET has lost approximately half of its alleged entertainment industry partners. Read More ...  [TOP]
AET Career Certificates Have Mysteriously Vanished   [Go to: 2006 ET PROGRAM GUIDE]
Missing Career Certificates
SMC's Academy of Entertainment and Technology has a history of not coming through on its vocational occupational certificates, alternatively known as "career certificates." First it was the theme park management, then the project management, and the game development program. Certificates get renamed, reshuffled, or on "pending" status. Computer Animation has been the sole survivor. Let's see what's new for Fall 2006. Read More ...  [TOP]

How AET Manipulates its Curriculum & Certificates   [Go to: AET Course Comparision]
AET Questionable Certificates
SMC is advertising that their Entertainment Technology department "offers career certificates in Animation, Game Development, Post Production, Visual Effects and Web Design." Now, how can AET offer a game development vocational certificate in Winter 2006 when a semester later in Spring 2006, this certificate is still pending approval? Even AET's official website under Career Certificates states that these 4 certificates are all "pending approval." Read More ...  [TOP]
The Decline of AET's Entertainment Technology Courses   [Go to: Course Comparision]
Stylized Photo of the AET Building
At AET's peak in Spring 2002, ET 11 had 7 sections and ET 14 had 5 sections. For the last several years, ET 11 and ET 14 both remain at only 2 sections each. During this same period, ET 12 went from 5 to 2 sections and ET 13 went from 3 to only 1 section. ET 12 is now only worth 1 unit of credit. These are allegedly the core computer-based courses for the Entertainment Technology department at Santa Monica College. This was done to help recover lost enrollment by allowing anyone to jump right into this course. Read More ...  [TOP]
SMC's Game Development Certificate Revealed   [Go to: AET Course Comparision]
PlayStation 2 on Fire
SMC's AET Game Development certificate is listed as requiring 39 to 41 units for satisfactory completion. If it was legitimately pending, it would be listed on the CCCCO website as such. The Winter and Spring schedule of courses wrongfully describe this certificate as something that is already offered at SMC when in fact it is not. Why has AET overhauled its course listings in Entertainment Technology to include courses in Game Authoring, Game Design, and Game Development, further deceiving its student body? Read More ...  [TOP]
Game Authoring I on SMC Main Campus   [Go to: ET13 Course Comparision]
Gamemaker Sprite in Action
There was a bright yellow flyer at AET yesterday advertising the ET 13 course. Two points of interest caught my eye. First, the fact that the course was being offered on main campus. Second, that it was called "ET 13 Game Prototyping in GameMaker 6.1." Game Authoring I was nowhere to be found on the flyer. Perhaps this will be the new name for the same old thing next semester, if it is offered at all. Meanwhile, all those expensive AET computers sit idle. Read More ...  [TOP]

The Harsh Truth About Video Game Industry Careers   [Go to: VIDEO GAME NEWS]
Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Vegas
Employment and earnings are difficult to track in the video game industry, which likes to employ business and legal positions. So, AET lost that chance when its Entertainment Industry Business occupational certificate fell to pieces. The study noted that there are very few entry-level game designer jobs available. As to 3-D game artists such as character artists and animators, background modelers, and texture artists, the study found that on-the-job training was more important than vocational training. Read More ...  [TOP]
Got Game? A Look at Game Design Schools   [Go to: DIGIPEN INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY]
DigiPen Student Artwork
But when I did a Google search for Video Game Design Schools, AET didn't even make the final cut. Could it be the lack of work showcased by students? Or is Bill Lancaster voicing a rosy picture in his press release while stating something completely different in SMC's committee meetings? If AET is not meeting the needs of its students, where else should one turn for an education in the game industry and where one's work gets the respect it deserves? Let's look at some other schools such as DigiPen, AI, and Full Sail. Read More ...  [TOP]
SMC Game Club Exposed   [Go to: GAME CLUB BRIEF HISTORY]
Brian Puschell on MySpace
SMC Game Club member Brian Puschell stated in his MySpace account: "I kill [virtual] people for fun." Was he planning to take his violence to a new dangerous level when he advocated throwing a military coup against the SMC Associated Students? The Gaming Club tells a shocking tale of sexual discrimination, violence, and potential identity theft of students' information. Why were faculty advisors David Javelosa and Howard Stahl failing to monitor this campus club? Read More ...  [TOP]

Game Development Eliminated from SMC   [Go to: GAME CLUB BRIEF HISTORY]
SMC Spring 2006 Educational Goals
It seems that SMC is giving its Student Self-Service a face-lift, but it is not actually providing the students with the desired services. On SMC's Spring 2006 Schedule of Classes, AET still contends that it offers a career certificate in Game Development. However, on the AET official website, SMC alleges that the Game Development career certificate is still "pending approval." To the best of my knowledge, it still isn't listed on the California Community College Chancellor's Office's Inventory of Approved and Projected Programs. Read More ...  [TOP]
ET 61 History of Animation SMC Online Quiz Tampering   [Go to: ET61 QUIZ CHART]
Mickey Mouse in Plane Crazy
Part of the requirements of the ET 61 History of Animation online course was a quiz, which was to be taken online. Each student was allegedly allowed to only take the quiz once. The quiz was only supposed to be open for one week. Students who did not bother to take the quiz should have received a "zero." However, AET Professor Jim Keeshen didn't fail these students, he broke his own policies and re-opened the quizzes on multiple occassions to those who didn't bother to meet the deadline. Read More ...  [TOP]
SMC's Deliberate and Deceitful Public Records Non-Compliance   [Go to: ET61 CHART]
Jim Keeshen and Felix the Cat
One of the requirements for the ET61 online course is an expensive CD-ROM set (about $105 with tax last time I checked for two CDs). The CDs have hyperlinks to a website with little of no material. When we asked for public records regarding these webpages, AET Dean Katharine Muller allegedly had them relocated inside the ET61 course to circumvent and obstruct compliance with the California Public Records Act. Ultimately, Jim Keeshen had to offer an explanation to his ET61 students why the CD-ROM links did not work. Read More ...  [TOP]
eCollege ET61 History of Animation Online Scam   [Go to: ET61 FALL 2006 CHART]
SMC Professor Paris Poirier
The Fall 2006 History of Animation course, taught by Paris Poirier, appears to be a complete sham, plagued by student and instructor apathy, overpriced CD-ROMS, outdated streaming media, lectures with broken hyperlinks, and missing course materials. Although it is 13 weeks into the 16 week course, there are only 8 units in the course, with most course work mysteriously vanishing after the 5th week. To top it all off, Professor Poirier hasn't been providing feedback or grades, leaving students up in the air. Read More ...  [TOP]


SAVE SMC Masthead
The SAVE SMC Blog and Website are not affiliated with nor endorsed by Santa Monica College. Des Manttari is a current student at SMC's Academy of Entertainment and Technology (AET), studying video game development and animation. She has been a teaching assistant for the AET courses: Storytelling and History of Animation. Ms. Mantttari was a former legal publisher and paralegal for many years.

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COMMENTS   more comments icon

"So, what was AET Chairman Jim Keeshen's motive for pushing the Theme Park Entertainment major down the throats of the CPEC and the California taxpayers when he was fully aware that the potential job income for AET students would be unpredictable? Was AET just a showcase of shallow illusions? Who benefited from the creation of these programs at AET? Perhaps Rhythm & Hues benefited in that it's Houdini 3D animation software was plugged at the Academy. And of course Keeshen always seems to benefit himself financially at the expense of the public. Rhythm & Hues was a client of Jim Keeshen Productions, Inc. What did Keeshen's company produce? None other than a Colgate 3D commercial, proving Keeshen's theory that "commercials pay the freight."

-- Des Manttari [December 3, 2005, Jim Keeshen's "Great Big Show"]

QUOTES   more comments icon

"Neither Mr. Keeshen, nor Mr. Javelosa have credentials to be teaching. They do not have an academic educational background, nor do they have the substantial industry experience in training and supervising personnel to qualify to be Vocational instructors. Neither of these men have the moral or educational requirements to be proper leaders for these young students on the AET campus."

-- Margaret Wick [former Vocational School Board Trustee]

"I'll leave on my own terms when I want to leave. Right now I'm just using them so that I can finish my film."

-- Jim Keeshen [Re: SMC and his "Day of the Dead" animated film]

"To be quite honest, it's about over, as far as a hot trend goes."

-- Michael Eggert, AET Graduate and Director of Web Production [Re: SMC's AET Vocational Program, commentary to LA Times, Jan. 31, 2001]
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