I am the admissions manager at VanArts, and I have been flooded with emails and information requests from Nigeria, especially over the past few months. A few applications have also arrived from there, and also from Uganda and Ghana. None of the prospective students who applied were able to acquire a visa to come over to Canada...the Embassy's system there is very cutthroat and inconsistent, from what these applicants tell me. There is also, on the applicants' part, a severe misunderstanding of how difficult it is to get a visa. Most of them apply very late before a program starts, and think they can just go down to the Embassy and pick it up the same day, but in fact it takes several weeks or even months to process, and then usually is rejected.
I'm just curious to know if anyone who works at other schools, whether they be animation-related or not, is also experiencing this. I also get TONS of correspondence and students from India, but that doesn't surprise me because I know that animation is huge over there. I know that South Africa has a booming animation industry....is there a similar interest or trend in Nigeria too? Or are there other reasons for this mass interest in coming to Canada in general? I've communicated extensively with several of these prospective students, and the vibe I get is that some of them could just be looking for a way to get out of the country. There has also been an epidemic of e-mail cash scams from Nigeria too, where people pretend they are royalty looking for Canadian bank accounts to deposit their money, and then drain the accounts. So while I like to give people the benefit of the doubt, I'm a bit skeptical about all this rampant 'interest' in animation coming from there.
Anybody know what's going on?