The Future of Gaming
Middle school students will have their opportunity to unlock their imaginations as they delve into the world of game design and technology! At the Game & Technology Academy, students get their hands on the latest next-gen computer game design tools, software, and technologies. Depending on which course each student chooses, they will work with the latest versions of Unity and Unreal, as well as 3D Studio Max, Photoshop CS6, Wacom tablets. Students in the Virtual Reality course will get to work with the HTC Vive.
Game Design Gurus
The interactive curriculum, workshops, and simulations at the Game & Technology Academy are taught by Mason’s Computer Game Design college faculty. These subject matter experts and gurus are uniquely qualified to get students started on their path to a possible future in game design. Tap into the valuable insight and experience of:
- Dr. Scott Martin, Founder, Mason Computer Game Design Program; Founding Director, Virginia Serious Game Institute
- James Casey, Associate Director, VSGI, Assistant Professor of Computer Game Design
- Gregory Grimsby, Assistant Professor of Computer Game Design
- Eric Piccione, Assistant Professor of Computer Game Design
- Sang Nam, Director, Mason Computer Game Design Program
- Vera Lichtenberg, Founding Director, Mason Game and Technology Academy
Students will also work with current graduate students who are part of the renowned Computer Game Design Program at Mason. These university students are studying and practicing to become the game gurus of the future, and they are on the cutting edge of this industry every day.
The Game & Technology Academy welcomes hundreds of gaming- and design-oriented middle school students every year. Our students work together to help each other master tools and techniques, tweak ideas, and offer suggestions and critiques to create the best work possible. At the Game & Technology Academy, students meet peers who have a wide variety of skills, some of which are different from their own—and that makes this program a great chance to learn from each other, as well as the professors and experts from Mason! Students form lasting friendships with fellow Game & Technology attendees, many of whom may be their colleagues in the future.
Throughout the Game & Technology Academy, students work toward creating their own original piece of digital media, whether that’s an animation or a game. While they are learning the tools and skills they will need to build their title, they will also brainstorm with the Mason game and design gurus and fellow students to refine their concept and look at all of the possibilities available to them.
The program culminates in an Indie Showcase, where the students present their game or animation to their peers and the Mason faculty they have been working with all week. They will explain their concept, talk about how they took it from idea to final production, demo it for the assembly, and hear critiques and suggestions. This is an important step in technology and design development, and it’s a chance to see the great things that everyone has come up with!
Dreams become reality this summer! The Game & Technology Academy offers two convenient options: a residential program and a commuter, or day, program. Students can come every day as a commuter student or spend the duration on campus as a residential student.
The commuter (day) option gives students the flexibility to attend the program and gain all of the knowledge, skills, and experience they are looking for while still having time for summer school, family, vacation, or other activities. Students attend classes for 5 days, 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM, returning to George Mason each day. Note: You will need to arrange transportation to and from campus for your student.
The residential option gives students a more immersive experience and get a taste of college life in the process. Students will stay on the George Mason University Campus for the full 6-day session and take part in special workshops and presentations.
Envision has collaborated with ACT to provide students with the ACT Engage assessment. The assessment focuses on critical non-cognitive components that are essential for academic achievement, career success, and lifelong wellness. This unique tool provides research-based insights and evaluates students’ attributes, enabling them to create their own personalized plan for future success.
In addition to giving students experience in the latest technology and tools, the Game & Technology Academy will help them hone personal skills like problem solving, critical thinking, entrepreneurship, communication, and teamwork—skills that will serve them well throughout their education and whole life!