About the Center for Animation


How it all began . . .

Once upon a time there was no animation program at Brigham Young University. Then, near the turn of the century, Brent Adams, a Salt Lake City architectural designer, started commuting to Provo to teach evening classes. Bitten by the teaching bug, Brent ended his career in architecture and, before he knew it, he had become the Walt Disney of BYU.  Next, out of the blue, a company in Alabama donated a significant amount of computer hardware to the university. When Adams asked why, the company’s president answered, “I don’t know; it just felt right.”  Not long after that, Phoenix, Arizona, homebuilder Ira A. Fulton stepped into the picture and purchased a supercomputer. Suddenly, BYU had the computer power that would allow undergraduate students to produce quality animation.

Since Then . . .

Soon the BYU animation program began attracting faculty members from companies like Disney, Pixar, DreamWorks, and Warner Bros.— and student-produced films from started turning the heads of entertainment executives from California to Cannes.  In the programs first year it won both a Student Emmy from the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences and a Student Academy Award from the same group that hosts the Oscars.They continue to dominate these two competitions, and in addition, they’ve won Nickelodeon’s Producers’ Choice Award and Viewers’ Choice Award, been invited to show at festivals such as Sundance, Cannes, and Annecy.  In 2010 University administrators decided to establish the BYU Center for Animation. The Center operates under the direction of three colleges—the Ira A. Fulton College of Engineering and Technology, the College of Fine Arts and Communications, and the College of Physical and Mathematical Sciences.



The animation major is intended to provide students with the skill sets necessary for success in the animation, live-action, special effects, and game industry with emphasis on both the artistic and technological avenues. 
The Computer Science Animation Emphasis gives students the opportunity to learn both the technical and artistic side of creating and implementing digital animation and games, preparing them for technical careers with animation and game programming studios.

Donate to the Program

We invite you to support the expansion of BYU’s highly regarded animation program so more students can prepare to become shining lights in the entertainment industry.