As some of you know, that have been reading my Blog here at Network Solutions 4 You, I maxed out my student loans and don’t even have an Associates Degree. Yet anyway! In this Blog post I will mention Autodesk University for Computer Aided Design and Manufacturing as well as Penn Foster College where you can get an Associates Degree for a number of studies. I am a techie so I will be focusing on the technology studies but Penn Foster College does offer more than just Computer Science at around $49-$60 a month in payment plans.
First, let’s start with Autodesk University where you can study for free to prepare for the certifications in the Autodesk software like Fusion 360 Computer Aided Design. For those not yet following my blog closely, Computer Aided Design (CAD) is a 3D drawing software that you can create plans for anything from animation characters for a movie, blueprints for a house, to blueprints for Aerospace designs. I have not taken a course on computer aided design other than Titans of CNC Academy so I haven’t gotten any of the free Autodesk software except for Fusion 360.
While Titans of CNC Academy is more for Computer Aided Design (CAD) and Computer Aided Manufacturing (CAM) Autodesk University is about all the different Autodesk software packages. Remember that Animation for video games and movies uses a different software than blueprinting and computer aided manufacturing tool paths. I am not much of an artist so I am only familiar with Fusion 360 which is much like Autocad. In fact, to make it easier to change between the two, the interface is similar.
As far as Autodesk University having free versions of the animation software, I have yet to find a link for you. The website does however say that you as a student or educator can get a free version. But the details to getting the free version is you may have to be enrolled in an actual college to get it. Please note that the Autodesk software has a high requirement for hardware. Fusion 360 suggests that you use a 4 core processor and at least 6-8 GB of RAM. Maya the animation software and Autocad will be more I am sure.
To sum up Autodesk University, you can find videos and lectures on the Autodesk site that will give you great insight into where you will be more comfortable and the cheapest way to get your software for your education. Please note that education software doesn’t offer a license to do work for money. So make sure your grades are high enough to score a job that you can get the company to buy your software. Autodesk Maya costs $1700 a year. And Autodesk Fusion 360 costs $475 a year if you make more than $100k a year.
Let’s get to the accredited college, Penn Foster. You can not get grants or student aid from FAFSA to attend Penn Foster but they do offer low cost payments that you can pay by the month or by each semester. They have Associates Degrees in studies from Accounting to Computer Information Systems to Manufacturing and Paralegal studies. They don’t offer many Bachelor’s Degrees but it is a start to get you a job hopefully, if you score well enough. My two interests here are Manufacturing and Computer Information Systems. I don’t know where to start because I am into both of them.
Penn Foster also offers Career Certificates that will give you a boost in education and a start in your career. I wish I would have been able to take the courses before I started college because I would have been up to speed and able to work in the field as I studied at college which is highly desired. If you have a student that is looking to get into one of these fields, it would be a great course to take to get started in that field. Some of the career certificates are for Autobody to Computer Information Systems. At the price of around $50 a month you will know if your struggling student will be able to handle the field study in college!