I'm curious to find out what other artists think about this article. The basic premise is that art professors tend to encourage a certain kind of highly conceptual art, and discourage traditional mediums that focus on technique and skill.
Is De-Skilling Killing Your Arts Education? by F. Scott Hess
In my experience, students are responsible for seeking out professors that will facilitate the kind of growth they're looking for. I took fine art courses where I was the black sheep illustrator, and generally disregarded by the professor and students. Eventually I realized that my shitty attitude toward non-representational art and the fine art majors was causing me to make some very reactive and offensive (not in a good way) art. Eventually I learned to stay true to myself while participating more meaningfully, and the response was overwhelmingly positive.
I think there definitely are the kind of professors (or whole institutions) that are asking students to be a carbon copy of themselves or the artists they admire, but these are the people to avoid in the first place. There will always be hack professors, hack critics, and hack artists of all kinds. It's your job to curate your influences, work hard, and never make excuses. As a working professional, this ability to discern between people who have your best interests in mind and those who don't is essential. You'll encounter horrible artists/professors/art directors/gallery owners/etc. that are only interested in cloning themselves, and great ones that truly know how to bring out the best in you. This is something that has always been true and will follow your entire career. You better fucking get used to it.