WomenGamers.com and Southern Methodist University Present WomenÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Scholarship
Details to be Unveiled at WomenÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Game Conference in Austin
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, August 26, 2004 - Research Triangle Park, NC - WomenGamers.com has teamed with The Guildhall at SMU (Southern Methodist University) to present the first-ever women's-only, industry-funded scholarship to attend SMU's one-of-a-kind digital games education program in Dallas, Texas. An official press conference is planned for the Women's Game Conference, September 9-10 in Austin, Texas.
Named the Game Development Scholarship for Women, the fund will help female students cover tuition expenses incurred during the 18-month Guildhall program, which costs $37,000. Applicants who meet The Guildhall at SMU's entrance requirements will be eligible to compete for the scholarship beginning in the fall. The scholarship awards will be funded by game industry businesses that recognize the need for adding more women to the game developer workforce.
The scholarship has been developed as an effort to achieve more female representation in the game development industry. A recent study by the Entertainment Software Association found that about 39% of gamers are women, and according to WomenGamers.com, this growing diversity among players calls for more women to be working in the game development industry.
"We feel strongly that more women should be working in the industry, but unfortunately it's not a simple problem to solve," says Phaedra Boinodiris of WomenGamers.com. "We established this scholarship to encourage women who wanted an opportunity to enter this challenging field of study."
The Guildhall at SMU Executive Director, Peter Raad, PhD, states, "Game development studios and publishers must learn to capitalize more effectively on the increasing numbers of women playing games. We believe the most important step toward achieving that goal is for game developers' staffing choices to be reflective of the growing market of female gamers."
Mary-Margaret.com, a top professional recruitment service for the interactive entertainment industry, is currently working with WomenGamers.com and The Guildhall at SMU to help identify publishers and game development studios who may be interested in donating to the scholarship fund. Mary-Margaret.com is a sponsor of the Women's Game Conference and an official supporter of The Guildhall at SMU's Game Development Scholarship for Women.
Since its launch in July of 1999, WomenGamers.Com is expanding the $6.3 billion market opportunity of the interactive entertainment industry by specifically addressing the needs of a currently untapped and eager market segment- women- with a unique gaming portal on the internet. Their ultimate aim is to establish an environment where women gamers can be integrated with the rest of the gaming community. WomenGamers.Com provides in-depth, accurate information about gaming and game contents to gamers, and to those who have the responsibility of buying games for their families.
About The Guildhall at SMU
The Guildhall at SMU is a unique game development education program offered in Dallas by the Hart eCenter at SMU. The Guildhall's 18-month certificate program responds to the industry's need for professionals who are immediately productive upon graduation and whose education prepares them to become gaming innovators of the future. Game development luminaries such as Graeme Devine, Levelord, Tom Hall, Paul Jaquays, John Romero and more, came to the Hart eCenter with a vision for this new kind of program and have been closely involved with the Guildhall's concept and design.
Mary-Margaret.com is a leading recruitment firm in entertainment software, representing top clients and creative leaders in the games software and hardware industries. With offices in Los Angeles, Boston, Austin, Washington D.C. and London, Mary-Margaret.com is continually seeking and placing highly-qualified creative, executive and technical talent for clients in the U.S., Canada, U.K. and Europe.
About Women's Game Conference
The Women's Game Conference focuses on women in the computer and video game industry. The conference program includes career paths for women in the industry, gender inclusive game design and women and girls as consumers of games. The conference runs concurrently with the Austin Game Conference, September 9-10, 2004 at the Austin Convention Center.
For more details regarding this scholarship, visit http://www.womengamers.com or http://guildhall.smu.edu, or contact: