GamePath recently announced it is organizing the first national Game Education Summit, a two-day meeting for game development educators and industry professionals to connect and share information about how to prepare future students for jobs in the industry.
The main supposition that the Summit will address is that there is a critical shortage of adequately skilled people to be hired into the game industry, which is something of an anomaly for an industry with such a competitive job market. The problem seems to stem from a disconnect that exists between academia and the industry, which the conference hopes to plug.
The Summit will be held on the campus of Southern Methodist University, home to The Guildhall, a graduate school at the university dedicated specifically to video game development. Dr. Peter Raad (shown), executive director of The Guildhall, says part of the solution depends on schools developing more comprehensive game education curriculum, treating the field as its own department.
“It’s time that video game development for entertainment and serious games move from courses and programs at colleges and universities to a new academic discipline … a discipline that meets the needs of the industry that created it,” Raad says
Some of the topics that will be tackled at the summit include teaching methodologies, starting a game development program, core curriculum topics, research collaboration, and increasing diversity. One particular theme that will be addressed throughout the conference is what makes a perfect job candidate. Over four separate panel discussions, studio heads and hiring managers will hash out what would make the perfect game programmer, artist, level designer, and producer.
“If you have a game development program, are considering starting one at your school, or you are responsible for recruiting talent for a video game company, this is a conference you need to attend,” Raad says. “Any success we have seen at SMU is dependent upon advice and counsel from industry leaders. After hearing from the industry experts, leading education game development programs will discuss what works, what doesn’t, and their plans for the future.”
Registration for Game Education Summit is currently open. Visit gameeducationsummit.com
for more information.