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Thursday, March 14, 2019

Staffordshire University to launch new games degrees in London

A new centre offering some of the UK’s most innovative games industry courses will open this year to grow graduates with the skills to feed the world’s fastest growing industries.

Launching in September, The Digital Institute London, based at Here East, Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in East London, will combine Staffordshire University’s specialist teaching with access to the capital’s thriving mix of companies.

The UK is currently the fifth largest games market in the world, with a record £5.11bn spent on gaming in the country last year.

And students seeking their dream job in the computer games industry can commence study on Staffordshire University’s pioneering degrees in Esports, Computer Games Design or Games PR and Community Management from September 2019.

Vice-Chancellor Professor Liz Barnes said: “Staffordshire University was the first University to launch a dedicated Esports degree last year and we know from our work with employers that the industry is crying out for innovative graduates with the skills to take on new and emerging roles, many of which are London-based.

“Staffordshire University is the Midlands Powerhouse for games education and we hope by taking our most innovative courses to the capital, we can help fulfil the needs of employers looking to grow UK industry.”

This major development draws on the University’s proud heritage as one of the first institutions in the country to offer computing, and as a leading university for Esports and computer gaming in the UK. Last year Staffordshire University cemented its reputation in the field when it was finalist for 'Best Educational Institution' at the TIGA Games Industry Awards 2018 – the Emmy’s of the games world.

Staffordshire University’s latest course offering, Games PR and Community Management, is a ground-breaking course for the games community managers of the future and will launch at both Staffordshire University’s main Stoke-on-Trent campus and Digital Institute London. And from September 2020 both the Stoke-on-Trent campus and Digital Institute London will add BSc (Hons) Cyber Security to the course portfolio.

Renowned games developer Philip Oliver, one of the founders of developers' trade body TIGA and Visiting Professor at Staffordshire University, added: “Staffordshire is going from strength to strength in Digital Skills education. The last 30 years has seen an explosion in digital entertainment and services, and I’m proud that the UK has been a dominate player globally.

“However, growth is accelerating, and we need to prepare the next generation of digital artists, coders and entrepreneurs with the skills required to ensure we stay at the forefront of this exciting digital revolution. I’ve chosen to support Staffordshire University as a visiting Professor to help inspire and utilise my experience as I see them making all the right bold moves for our digital and connected futures.”

The announcement was this week backed by Universities Minister Chris Skidmore who added: “There is a clear need to equip people with specialist skills, for areas like the growing games industry, and the Digital Institute London will help to grow our digital and technology capability in London and the South East, offering opportunities for both students and businesses.”

Work to create replicate Staffordshire University’s dedicated games and Esports teaching facilities at Here East is starting immediately. Meanwhile Open Days events for prospective students will be held at Red Bull Gaming Sphere in Shoreditch on 28th April, 18th June, 10th August.

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