SOE “challenges” other firms to stump up game dev scholarships for women

By Patrick Garratt, Saturday, 15 November 2008 09:58 GMT

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SOE’s asked other companies to fork out scholarships of $10,000 to give to women looking to get training in games development.

“Today, I am challenging everyone to take action to help level the playing field for women pursuing a career in video games. By donating to the G.I.R.L. scholarship, we can encourage diversity in development and make a difference, hopefully creating more opportunities for women and ultimately making more video games women will want to play,” said SOE’s Torrie Dorrell.

The firm currently runs the G.I.R.L. program, which gives money to women to go to college and learn how to fit triangles together.

Press release after the link.

SONY ONLINE ENTERTAINMENT ISSUES INDUSTRY-WIDE

CALL TO ACTION TO EXPAND G.I.R.L. SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAM

SAN DIEGO, Calif. – Nov. 13, 2008 – Sony Online Entertainment LLC (SOE), a global leader in online gaming, invited all companies doing business in the video game industry to join SOE’s efforts to educate and recruit more women into the field of video game creation, design and production.

In a lunchtime keynote speech during the International Game Developers Association conference in San Francisco, Torrie Dorrell, senior vice president of Global Sales and Marketing for SOE, challenged companies in the video game industry to each make a $10,000 donation toward the G.I.R.L. – Gamers In Real Life – scholarship, with the goal of creating multiple scholarships and more opportunities for women.

“Today, I am challenging everyone to take action to help level the playing field for women pursuing a career in video games. By donating to the G.I.R.L. scholarship, we can encourage diversity in development and make a difference, hopefully creating more opportunities for women and ultimately making more video games women will want to play,” said Dorrell.

First awarded in 2008, the G.I.R.L. scholarship was created by SOE and encourages female students toward career paths in the creative and applied arts, with the ultimate goal of developing video games that are more interesting for women to play. In 2009, the program will be managed by Scholarship America®, a leading non-profit educational support program. SOE will offer students of undergraduate programs related to video games a chance to compete for the scholarship by submitting original artwork and essays to a panel of judges.

“SOE’s vision is commendable, and we fully endorse the G.I.R.L. scholarship program and look forward to the results of this initiative,” said Joseph Olin, president of The Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences. “Expanding the presence of women in video games reflects SOE’s foresight and acknowledges its contributions to the future of our dynamic entertainment medium.”

For more information about the G.I.R.L. scholarship program, please visit, www.girl.soe.com.

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