Unlike some school programs that are offered in all state universities and colleges, photography, as a full-pledged course, is not as common. In fact, only a handful of art schools have such a comprehensive program.
This can be both an advantage and a disadvantage for students who are interested in taking up photography as a course and not just as an elective in college. Finding the right school can be crucial and with only a few to choose from, it will either be easy or hard depending on your priorities and resources.
Having so few photography schools can be a disadvantage, as most will probably be offered in New York or in other key cities in the country. Finding a good photography school will then create a problem with students who live far away from major cities.
Spendings during school year should also be looked into as students will probably have to reside in dormitories. Also, one must remember that photography requires a lot of additional expenses for materials and projects. Students may need to buy their own camera and spend a fortune in films and developing. Look into the curriculum and if possible ask if equipment and other materials are already provided or included in the tuition fee.
Before you submit your requirements and enroll, make sure that you have thoroughly research the program in photography that the school offers. Remember that there are schools that specialize in photography as a course. Look for that school and try your best to get in. The reputation that the school has will eventually serve you in good stead when you apply for a job.
College is not just the time to develop your skill but also to establish connections in the profession and perhaps, if one is lucky to also find a mentor. Research on the professors that would be teaching the course. It would be good if they are giants in the field and even better if they are people whose work you really admire.
Photography has different subfields. If you have already identified the sub-field that you want to concentrate in, you should look into the curriculum and make sure that it is included. If not, try to look into other photography schools, that do offer the subject. This way, you will be able to learn more about it and eventually concentrate on it. Still, it is also important to look into the overall curriculum and see what other areas of photography will be taught.