2. Santa Fe University of Art and Design, Santa Fe, N.M.
Program: While learning about aspects of stage production ranging from technical to performative, first-year students are welcome to audition for main stage productions. The school also offers B.F.A. degrees in acting, music theater, and dance; Tuition: $28,836;
Notable Alumni: Melissa van der Schyff; Professional opportunities: New Mexico may seem an unlikely place to find professional film and TV work, but a quick look at the state’s recent résumé belies assumptions. A slew of star-studded films starring the likes of Sean Penn, Jennifer Aniston, and Robert Redford were shot in the state over the last year. And students at the University of Art and Design were potentially on hand to snap up available background work.