60 Second Interview: Gaming Student

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Game design student Andrew Reid talks to us about life at Abertay University.

Andrew Reid

What course are you studying: BA (Hons) Game Design & Production Management at Abertay University

What did you study at school/college: Maths, English, History, Art & Design, Physics, Graphic Communication, Information Systems

Why did you choose this course?
I’ve been playing video games for as long as I can remember, starting with the Sega MegaDrive, and now a Sony loyalist. Video games have been my escape and passion, but I never really knew that you could study video games. It wasn’t until I was filling out my UCAS application (originally planning for a History and Secondary Education degree) that my twin brother searched for it on Google. That was enough to convince me to apply instead for Abertay University.

Why did you choose this uni?
Abertay University is known worldwide for its video game degrees, and I think we are very fortunate to have an institution such as this in the UK. Abertay’s reputation has recently been elevated to a new level, by being featured on the Princeton Review “Top 25 Places to Study Video Game Design” – all down to the incredible staff within the Institute of Arts, Media and Games.

What are the facilities like?
The library is expansive, with lots of areas to work, and plenty of resources available to all students. There is a gym facility that offers excellent membership rates, and the Student Union is literally across a (very narrow) road, which has a sports bar, a gallery, and a gaming bar!

What's the student experience like?
Dundee is known for being one of the best places for a night out. There are tons of nightclubs, bars, restaurants and theatres to whet everyone’s appetite. There are loads of societies that people can get involved in (from Pokemon to Renaissance Martial Arts!) where you can make new friends.

Best thing about studying at your uni?
The community. Abertay is a 6000-strong university, making it relatively small in size, so you tend to meet everyone at least once during your time here. Staff, students and societies make Abetay a welcoming place to study.

Have you done any work-experience?
I have been fortunate to hold numerous positions at Abertay. I have started my own student journalism group (2012/13), I have been a Producer for developing video games (2013/14), a Student Executive Officer for the Students’ Association (2013/14), a Research Assistant (2014/15), a Class Representative (2014/15), and a Summer Intern for Teaching and Learning Enhancement (2014). My course is very multi-disciplinary!

What are your future career plans?
I am relatively flexible with my career plans. I have an interest in project management of video games and digital media, but I do aim to continue my academic career towards a PhD and become a lecturer in the Digital Humanities (more specifically, “Serious Games” and their applications to society).

Any tips for students thinking about going to uni?
Make the most of it. A degree is simply the foundation of being at university, and realistically you will struggle to gain graduate employment if you don’t take on other projects. Join societies, get involved around campus, organise events, start an enterprise, do some fundraising – anything that will make you look different. Don’t be worried if it’s not relevant to your course – the more outlandish, the more you stand out and the more opportunities you will have!

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