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Utah Division of Games UNBOXING


On Thursday, August 24th, 2023, the Division of Games at the University of Utah held it's unboxing -- a celebration of the division's transition from the Entertainment Arts and Engineering Program and the launch of the new Division.  The event was open to University of Utah faculty, staff, and students, and featured an opening keynote from Doug Bowser, CEO of Nintendo USA and proud U alum, a panel on the definition of doctoral programs in Games with leading academics from games programs across the country, and a panel of distinguished EAE alumni discussing the impact of EAE on their careers and how current students can pursue success in the games industry.

The keynote and panels ran from 1:00PM until 4:00PM, followed by an invitation-only reception from 6:00PM to 8:00, with remarks by University of Utah President Taylor Randall and the Division of Games chair Michael Young [Michael's remarks can be read here].

The details for the event include:

Location:  All sessions were located at the Cleone Peterson Eccles Alumni House
The University of Utah, 155 Central Campus Dr, Salt Lake City, UT 84112

Schedule for Keynote and Panel Sessions

  • 1:00 Doug Bowser, President, Nintendo America (keynote)
  • 2:00 Building a Ph.D. Program in Games (panel)
    • Panelists include:
      • Brian Magerko, Ph.D., Director of Graduate Studies, Digital Media, Georgia Tech
      • Mei Si, Ph.D., Graduate Program Director, Critical Game Design, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
      • Gillian Smith, Ph.D., Director, Interactive Media and Game Development, Worcester Polytechnic Institute
      • Moderator:  Jose Zagal, Ph.D., Professor, Lecturer, Division of Games, University of Utah
  • 3:00 EAE Alumni Stories and The Road to Success
    • Panelists include:
      • Vaibhav Bhaleraao, senior gameplay engineer, Striking Distance Studios
      • Alanna Carroll, narrative designer, Blizzard Entertainment
      • Antonio Revard, senior technical designer, Santa Monica Studio
      • Laura Warner, social game design lead, Bungie
      • Moderator: Adam Hunter, Alumni and Industry Relations Manager, Division of Games, University of Utah