Full Sail University
Full Sail University is a for-profit university in unincorporated Orange County, Florida, near Winter Park, Florida. The school was founded in 1979 in Dayton, Ohio as Full Sail Recording Workshop. Full Sail relocated to Florida in 1980, adding video production and film production courses and, with the move in 1989 to its current campus, expanded its curriculum to include other entertainment and media-related areas of study. Full Sail began offering online degrees in 2007. The school is partly owned by TA Associates, a private equity firm.
Full Sail is not regionally accredited, but is nationally accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC) to award associate’s, bachelor’s degrees, and master’s degrees in audio, film, design, computer animation, business, and other fields. The school offers 49 degree programs and 2 graduate certificates and lists a student population of around 16,100.
Full Sail University’s main campus is located outside of Winter Park, Florida, in unincorporated Orange County, 8.6 miles (13.8 km) northeast of downtown Orlando. The college campus contains the central administrative offices, university library, and academic buildings, including a production backlot, more than 110 studios and production environments, film backlot, auditorium, and Full Sail Studios. The university moved to Winter Park in 1989. Renovation and expansion into surrounding buildings began in 1995, growing into three additional buildings by 2004. In 2009, the university expanded into a fifth building, a 49,000-square-foot (4,600 m2) space near campus to accommodate educators for the online degree program.
Full Sail University is an entertainment media institution offering on-campus and online degrees, including 2 graduate certificates, 2 associate degrees, 25 bachelor’s degrees, and 8 master’s degrees. Academic degree programs are primarily focused on audio, film and media production, video game design, animation and other studies related to the media and entertainment industries. Over 70% of students and graduates have used financial aid to cover some or all of their education expenses. Students must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) before applying for student loans through the university.
The college does not have on-campus dormitories. A housing department coordinates housing and roommate arrangements with approximately 50 apartment complexes located within a 5-mile radius of the campus, most of which are within walking distance.
Students participate in 25 different clubs and organizations oriented toward entertainment and media industries, including student chapters of AES, AIGA, Grammy U, IGDA, MEISA and DECA. Other clubs include the Entertainment Networking Society, Gay–Straight Alliance, International Film Society and Veterans Group. Students generally manage the groups, with an instructor providing support.