State ponies up for biz training

Santa Monica College’s new Academy of Entertainment and Technology may receive an added $1.25 million kick from the proposed 1997-98 budget of Gov. Pete Wilson. The state budget is scheduled to be finalized in June.

The program, which will debut this fall at the Westside community college, will offer two-year degrees in four specialty areas: computer and digital animation; CD-ROM and Gameworks; theme park design; and entertainment industry management. Most students are expected to immediately enter the job market after completing the program, according to SMC officials.

“This academy will help address the workforce shortage in California’s rapidly growing entertainment and multimedia industries while bringing into the pipeline students who would not otherwise have access to these rewarding and high-paying jobs of the future,” said Wilson in a statement.

Although significant funding already had been earmarked for the program, the additional $1.25 million in new money will aid SMC in buying “state of the art” equipment, according to SMC officials.

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