Code funds to assist polytechnic

The New Zealand Centre of Digital Excellence (Code) has put aside $190,000 to invest in the development of vocational training with Otago Polytechnic.

The investment, announced at an event in Dunedin last night at which the latest recipients of Code’s funding for game developers were also revealed, will see the polytech’s bachelor of information technology and bachelor of design (communication) degrees include training in game design, game production and technical art for video games.

Otago Polytechnic recently signed a memorandum of understanding with Swedish-based Futuregames.

The game development learning company would provide professional development for staff, mentoring for student projects and feedback on Otago Polytechnic’s games courses, as well as a range of learning materials.

Polytechnic chief executive Dr Megan Gibbons said the institution welcomed the funding which would help to continue to develop and implement gaming-specific vocational education.

"Otago Polytechnic is continuing to build a multidisciplinary learning team dedicated to building games industry-ready graduates."

Code steering group chairman and Te Pukenga council chairman Murray Strong said the latest developments were testament to the collaboration of all partners within Code.

"In Otago Polytechnic’s case, it will ensure graduates are work-ready and able to immediately apply their skills in a range of gaming industry contexts, and through the grant streams and industry support, Code is building a platform to welcome students into the workforce once they graduate,” Mr Strong said.

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