BEST MOVIE-TRAINING COLLEGES
1) University of Southern California
2) New York University
3) American Film Institute
4) University of California at Los Angeles
5) California Institute of the Arts
6) Columbia University
7) Chapman University
8) Loyola Marymount University
9) Wesleyan University
10) Emerson College
... 25) Ithaca College
Today there are hundreds of art schools, colleges and universities that have live-action and animated movie curriculums. A quarter-century ago there existed but a handful; that reality has changed drastically in the last three decades. Now junior colleges, high schools, trade schools and universities large and small have film programs.
Animation graduates come from all parts of the country (and world) to work in Los Angeles. Starting in the 1970s, young artists were leaving Cal Arts in mid-curriculum by the bus-load, off to work at Disney or one of the TV production houses.
That still happens now, but the competition is ten times tougher. Cal Arts students intern at Nick and Cartoon Network. USC undergrads drop out to take work at mid-sized L.A. animation studios. Few want to pass up an opportunity to score an industry job, even when they're two semesters away from a diploma.
The movie industry has always been a tough business to break into; that's now also true of the cartoon segment. Though the business is booming, the fight for entry-level jobs is fiercer than ever.
(H/t Tom Sito.)