Women in Games Scholarships Offer New Opportunities

VFS awards scholarships to Game Design and Programming for Games, Web & Mobile

Vancouver, B.C. (May 21, 2014) – Vancouver Film School (VFS) is pleased to announce the winners of the sixth annual Women in Games Scholarships: Elizabeth Wright of Alberta, Canada, Andreia Gonçalves of Portugal, Meabh McCarthy of Ireland, and Macarena Poo Garcia of Mexico. This year, in addition to a full-tuition scholarship to the Game Design program, VFS is offering full-tuition scholarship opportunities to its brand-new Programming for Games, Web & Mobile program. "It always amazes me when I see the quality of applicants for the Women in Games Scholarship," says Dave Warfield, Head of Game Design and Programming for Games, Web & Mobile at VFS. "It is always hard to choose, but this year's winners stood above the rest by showing a great mix of creativity, attention to detail, and technical skill that will make them very successful students."

The first initiative of its kind in the world to address the need for female game professionals, these scholarships will cover full tuition for one intense year of industry-current education. Gender representation has been an evolving issue in the game industry for several years now, and although much progress has been made, it remains a popular topic in online forums and social media. According to a recent study, 45% of gamers are female – but an article written in The Boston Globe last year stated that women only account for 11% of the game designers working in the industry and 3% of programmers. The Women in Games Scholarships are designed to help address this gender imbalance and ultimately empower more talented female game professionals. "I was both surprised and excited when I received the call," says Meabh McCarthy. "This scholarship enables me to learn so much and change my career path, which is such a privilege. I really am so grateful and honoured to have been selected."

Previous winners include: Shannon Lee of Canada, who now works at Microsoft; Annie Dickerson from the United States, currently at Allen Interactions; Lala Fuchs from Brazil, who won a Unity Award for Best Student Game and is currently with DeNa Studios; Kristina Soltvedt Wiik from Norway, now at United Front Games; and four winners from 2013 who will graduate from VFS in June this year. For more information on Vancouver Film School's Game Design and Programming for Games, Web & Mobile programs – the only one-year programs included in the Princeton Review's 2013 list of Top Game Design Programs – visit vfs.edu.

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About Game Design at Vancouver Film School
Founded in 1987, Vancouver Film School is Canada's premier post-secondary entertainment arts institution and one of the most distinguished in the world. With 13 production-oriented programs and a world-leading one-year education model, VFS prepares students to join the creative economy. In the Game Design program, students learn all aspects of designing games, from visual storytelling to level design principles to the production process, ultimately creating the games that will be their professional calling cards. VFS Game Design grads have worked on such titles as Halo 4, Sleeping Dogs, Deus Ex: Human RevolutionWarhammer 40,000: Space Marine, Dead Rising 2, and Mass Effect 3. To find out more, visit vfs.com.