2015-2016 IGM Graduate and Undergraduate Delegates

Congratulations to the IGM Department 2015-2016 Undergraduate and Graduate Delegates.  We asked Jonathan and Jacqueline for some advise they would give current and future IGM students to assist them through their time here and as they move forward into their careers.

 

  Jonathan Palmer - IGM Graduate Delegate

What advice would you give an incoming student?

  • My immediate advice is to try new technologies, approaches and projects. The worst case scenario to trying new things is it goes horribly wrong and you can learn from the context which makes you a better game developer, or professional individual in general. Staying entirely within your comfort zone and what you know will never allow you to grow and improve beyond what you're capable of.

    A second piece of advice is to work on lots of projects. Don't just do your academics. Academics make sure you know how to do your job, passion projects help because they will be what gets you a job. 

What’s your favorite memory as an undergraduate student in IGM?

  • During my undergraduate I had a 10 week project. We made a game called Peripheral Void, where the objects you could see would affect you. It was a wild quarter, we implemented so many features so quickly. At the end of the quarter, we showed it to classmates, faculty and other students. It was very well received which felt fantastic. Not everything went perfectly, but we made so much progress because we wanted to succeed.

What’s been the most influential course you’ve taken?

  • My most influential would be 3D Game Graphics Programming with Chris Cascioli (where this 10 week project came from). We learned an impressive amount of technical information as well as scope. It was one of the best learning environments I've had in my time here. Chris was very relaxed and helped us learn what we wanted to learn.​

What will you miss the most about IGM/RIT?

  • The community of students and faculty. After an undergraduate and graduate degree here, I've gotten to know so many unique people. An aspect of that community is also the projects people are working on - from board games to standard video games to VR games to games for the blind. There's so much diversity in idea, platform and process that it's hard not to learn or be excited in what everyone is accomplishing.​

What’s next for you in the real world?

  • It's honestly very up in the air. Breaking into the industry is hard but I'm not without options. I might spend the summer doing a Co-Up to push forward a game I've had on the back-burner. The alternative would be working with a local startup who is making a haptic feedback suit. I've been helping them with their developer API and convention demos. This could all be disrupted depending on if I hear back from one of the many job applications I've sent out.​

 

  Jacqueline Wiley - IGM Undergraduate Delegate

What advice would you give an incoming student?

  • As a tour guide, I meet incoming students a lot. Whenever I meet a prospective IGM student I tell them this: go above and beyond! The most successful students in the department are those that don't just do what they need to in order to get a good grade on assignments. Learning new libraries, honing your skills, reading everything you can, and working on personal projects is extremely important. This is what is going to make you a good developer/designer.​

What’s your favorite memory as an undergraduate student in IGM?

  • My favorite IGM memory is honestly working on Adventure Guild. When our Kickstarter succeeded, it was the best day. Working on a game with my friends that people we've never met get to play is really awesome. We're a bunch of college students with a dream, and seeing that dream through is super rewarding.

What’s been the most influential course you’ve taken?

  • The most influential course I've taken was Level Design with Jesse O'Brien. I was really passionate about the course going into it, and Jesse just made me even more so! I was in the first iteration of the course, but it was already in a really good place. Jesse is a wealth of information, and I learned a lot from him and his assignments that I later incorporated into Adventure Guild. Although I'm not going to be a level designer when I graduate, what I learned in that class helped me discuss level design with professionals at my co-op and I'm sure it'll do the same in the future!

What will you miss the most about IGM/RIT?

  • I'm really going to miss the faculty and staff. There are so many friendly professors, and they really want to see you succeed. All my friends in the department have great relationships with the professors, and we often hang out in their offices and chat. I know I'll keep up with them on social media, but it won't be the same as stopping to chat in the halls!

What’s next for you in the real world?

  • Next for me I'll be shipping off to California to start my dream job at Blizzard Entertainment, as an associate game designer on World of Warcraft. I could not be more excited to get back to work there; I've missed it dearly since my co-op ended!​