I use the actual version of Blender(2.63a)... but the choice of tools really should not matter. It's actually a pretty simple mesh, without fancy subsurfacing, deforms and stuff. The particle system is 'out of the box' and the Lensflares are single Halos and light sources, with keyframe sizes. I also tried to make a textured version, but it looks really awful with textures.
But yours is painted, right? It might also be a collage. Anyway I feel pretty nostalgic about this.
it's always odd, if the teachers doesn't know much themselves.
I use blender since about 6 or 7 years now (though i started using the A4 Gamestudio's MDL program, max, milkshape, maya and so on), and I don't know a lot about it. But that's ok, since blender is such a huge program, i believe you simply can't know everything. I mean, it's a CGI program, it has a really powerful video editor embedded, and a game engine, and a whole more plug-in-and-go-play stuff. - and you can combine all of them. New version has motion tracking embedded as well. Then Cycles is way different than normal render, and i haven't even mentioned composites and nodes. - so i think it's ok, not to know everything
Honestly, I don't know anything about Adobe's product palette (except flash suite maybe), but i read through it. Fireworks is - according to adobe - a CSS Editor, which means, your Picture is a vector graphic... right? Drags the whole work in a completely different light.
man......that made my brain hurt even worse about blender haha :* .....so confusing........... Yeah that's pretty much what Fireworks is.....vector imaging- a lot less complex than 3D animation! Lolz it's better for my fragile brain. :3