June 9, 2008

SMU hosts video game industry summit
Student-created games on exhibit

DALLAS (SMU) – Video game industry leaders and educators from across the country will meet at Southern Methodist University on Tuesday and Wednesday, June 10–11, to address what many experts say is the video game industry’s number one problem – a critical shortage of skilled professionals.

Dr. Peter Raad
   How Academia Will Approach
   Video Games:

  • Some have courses about video games/ digital games – an appreciation of the medium.
  • Others offer courses that enable someone to become a critic of the discipline. People might follow this route to become journalists.
  • The third – ours – teaches people to become game developers. We need people who understand such things as cultural anthropology, medieval history, art, architecture, and creative design – enough to create life experiences in digital media.

   Dr. Peter Raad is an engineering professor and
   Executive Director of The Guildhall at SMU.

The summit, which is being held in SMU's Hughes-Trigg Student Center, will address such issues as teaching methodologies, starting a game development program, core curriculum topics, research collaboration and increasing diversity.

Featured speakers for the event will include Colleen McCreary of Electronic Arts, the world’s largest interactive entertainment software company, as well as Mark Meyers of Disney Interactive, Warren Spector of Junction Point Studios, Mark Danks of Sony Computer Entertainment, Frank Savage of Microsoft, Donald Marinelli of Carnegie Mellon University, and Peter Raad of The Guildhall at SMU.

The summit also will include a "living classroom," where attendees can try out games developed by students of The Guildhall at SMU from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesday in the West Ballroom on the lower level of Hughes-Trigg. The Guildhall at SMU is a graduate-level video game design program that has won accolades for its collaborative working relationships with industry leaders and its ability to place extraordinary numbers of graduates into the gaming industry.

The Game Education Summit is sponsored by GamePath LLC, an Austin-based independent conference and trade show production company.

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