Heyo, senior CA here. I was wondering when this thread would start up for the 2009 hopefuls lol.
I feel compelled to give a bit of a warning about Ringling. It's not for everyone. Ringling has a specific goal in mind and prospective students should think carefully and see if that goal is in line with their own. Now that that's outta the way...
Ringling is a commercial art school. The most important thing here is how to make yourself marketable to companies. Even Fine Art is commercial, to a degree. If that is what you're looking for, then great! However, for some artists, the atmosphere leaves them wanting a more enriching environment. Realizing that you're only here to train yourself to work for a company can be disillusioning to those in need of soul-searching.
I can only speak for CA though. But here is what I can say about the program. IT'S TOUGH AS BALLS. Not to scare you, but it is my honest opinion that if you do not have the passion for animation, the curriculum will eat you alive. Ask yourself this question, "Can I imagine myself doing anything else for a living?". If the answer is 'no', you may be able to succeed in CA. But, if the answer is 'yes', I'd have to strongly suggest that you look into other opportunities. If you have any doubts about succeeding as a CG artist, listen to those doubts very carefully. You were born with the greatest alarm system in the world, your gut. Think about those doubts and really give them consideration.
Now, I know it sounds a bit mean-spirited, but it's the truth. CA students spend an inordinate amount of time in the labs working on animations because it just demands a long time to do anything. The only way we are actually able to slog through is with that passion; that knowledge that one day it'll all pay off and we'll be living high and mighty at Pixar(exaggerating of course ). It will be absolutely miserable if you have any doubts about CG as a career. So, please think long and hard about going into CA.
If you have any specific questions, feel free to PM me.
"So now we have modeled something that will get us nowhere in life"