Insider's Guide - The Animation Workshop/ VIA University College
Whether you’re already at school, looking to find a new school or even considering moving overseas to study, nothing beats hearing from the students themselves! We speak to Anne Hodgers, an Irish native, living in Denmark, about the ins and outs of studying at The Animation Workshop/VIA University College. Anne is a 3D animator, also with a focus in directing short film, and production management.
What is the name of your school?
The Animation Workshop (Commonly referred to as ‘TAW’).
What is the name of the neighbourhood?
TAW is in the heart of Viborg city, Denmark.
Closest train station or public transport option?
The college is a 10 minute walk from the train & bus station.
How long have you been there?
Now in my final year, I have been in Viborg a little over 2 years, and will graduate in January of 2022.
Why did you choose to study here?
Originally, I came to TAW to train in classical figure studies at The Drawing Academy (a masterclass offered at TAW). Once I arrived, not only the level of skill but the dedication of the students was impressive. Also, the sense of creation within the community here was infectious. Once you arrive at TAW, you are surrounded by be people dedicated to their craft and forever learning how to
advance. Having always had a love for film & animation, the college was a great fit for me.
TAW’s approach to teaching offered an education and a foot into the industry all in one line of study.
The first thing you see when you walk outside your school?
When you take a step outside the college building, there is forever a crew of students playing football tennis in the yard. We are dedicated workers, so a moment away from our desks is sometimes needed!
The closest shop to outside your school is:
Føtex is our nearby shop, great for bananas, rye bread, and Danish pastry, the essentials.
Your school is great, but you wouldn't mind a bit less:
I would like less like bad attempts, from us students, at mimicking the all of the international accents you hear at TAW! ..This is a lie. I am amazing at a French/Argentinean accent.
The unofficial uniform of your school is:
It’s hard to categorise the style at TAW, it’s so vast considering the students hail from all over the world, that in itself is almost TAW’s unofficial style. But! It is common to see pair of beat up runners, thrifted oversized jumper, and square eyes from looking at monitors.
We are trusted and encouraged. Our input is asked for, listened to, and makes a change.
A mandatory stop for anyone new to your city:
There is beautiful part of Viborg city known as the old town, you can stroll through and enjoy the old buildings & cobble roads. It will also lead you down to the Viborg lakes; there are some lovely spots to disappear into nature. Viborg has quite a charm to it.
A common myth about your school is:
I hear from friends outside of TAW that they think the hours the students work must be unpleasant. But this is not so, we work the hours given, but the majority of students in the college are happy to arrive early or leave a bit later than normal. This is more so down the dedication and drive to work. It can be intense, but it derives from students with such passion, people here want to work and get every drop out of the college that they can!
A massive night out for students at your school is likely to be:
The graduation party is the biggest event in the year at The Animation Workshop. It is for graduating students to have their last big dance at TAW with their classmates, entire of taw’s students, alumni and staff.
As we set off into industry we spread out all over the world, this makes the farewells hard, but makes the celebration all the better. And if you are lucky, when the party is over and the venue shuts, we all may sneak to pub on the college grounds and party into the wee hours of the morning.
You won’t find a better place to eat than at:
The red yard. The best spot to break for lunch and take our mind away from work is in the centre of TAW’s campus, the red yard, so aptly named.
The strangest thing you’ve ever seen at your school is:
Well, If I am only to choose one moment, It must at our open mic night. We played a game of “What’s in the fridge?” and when I tell you I saw a tiger being taken out from the fridge, it is no exaggeration.
One thing you’d never change about your school is:
The faith put in students by the staff. We are trusted and encouraged. Our input is asked for, listened to, and makes a change. We are given the chance to review with sincerity the education given to us and help advance it.
That is astronomical for the current and prospective students, as our education is
ever adapting to our needs. Such faith is also put in us especially in final year - the sky is the limit with what we want to achieve in our bachelor films. We decide. I hope this core of encouragement and innovation at TAW will stay resolute as a core of the college.
But one thing you wouldn’t mind seeing changed is:
I wouldn’t mind being given a chance at learning a bit of Danish, to the side of our education. Even so, keeping the teaching entirely in English is wonderful, giving all us internationals the opportunity to study at TAW. However, I am outstanding at counting to 10 in Danish, it only took me 2 years!
Someone gives you $1M to pimp out your school. You use it to:
I think I would use the $1M to add something equivalent to a masters degree to the college, but use it as platform of support for students to expand on IP’s or company start up’s. Or use it to add even more internship periods. (Also, buy a large tent to host parties outside on the college grounds, to protect us from the Danish weather while we beer bowl.)
you can find Anne Hodgers on LinkedIn.