The Grads In Games Awards are designed to recognise the individuals and institutions that have made a real impact in improving the links between the games industry and education.

The awards will recognise and highlight the academics, universities, colleges & courses that are going the extra mile, not just in educating, but actively helping students make the leap from student games developer to professional games developer!

We will also recognise the students and projects that are already firmly on this path, producing exemplary work and helping those around them to achieve more.

The Grads In Games Awards

Award Categories 2019

Search For A Star & Sumo Digital Rising Star

Programming | Environment Art | Character Art | Animation | VFX

Academic

Educational Institution

Student

Core Tech Programmer
Sponsored by d3t

Technical Artist

Student Game
Sponsored by Epic Games

Industry Collaboration

Graduate Employer

Graduate Impact

Eligibility period for the 2019 awards is 1st March 2018 to 1st March 2019 unless stated otherwise.

You may enter multiple nominations for a single category, as long as they are for different nominees.

You may enter nominations for multiple categories.

Nominations for the 2019 awards will open in early 2019.

Shortlists & Winners

2019 shortlists will be released in March 2019 & all finalists will be invited to attend the awards presentation at the Search For A Star Conference in April.

Academic Award

Eligibility : Individual academics, lecturers & tutors who have contributed to games or games-related courses during the eligibility period.
Team/group nominations may also be considered in place of individual nominations.

Lecturers & academics who have demonstrated a real, positive impact with their students over the past 12 months. We want to showcase the academics who are doing the most to help students, giving them the best opportunities to graduate straight into a games industry role.

These are the academics that go beyond just the lectures, who go out of their way to mentor students, to organise industry events and speakers, and can show the beneficial results of their work.

Educational Institution Award

Eligibility : Universities, colleges and academic institutions who have operated undergraduate or post-graduate games or games-related courses during the eligibility period.

Universities and academic institutions that have demonstrated a real, positive impact with their students over the past 12 months. We want to showcase the departments and courses that are doing the most to help students, giving them the best opportunities to graduate straight into a games industry role.

We want to recognise the institutions who actively implement initiatives or take positive actions to help students gain employment within the games industry.

Student Hero Award

Eligibility : Individuals studying undergraduate or post-graduate games or games-related courses.

Current students who have demonstrated a real, positive impact with their their fellow students over the past 12 months. We want to showcase the students who are the doing the most to support, progress and inspire their peers through a range of pro-active and supportive activities.

These are the students that actively strive to learn more, are happy to help and share their knowledge, who are always trying new things and new approaches, and who probably already have an impressive portfolio of projects both as part of coursework & as extra-curricular work.

Core Tech Programmer

SPONSORED BY

d3t

Eligibility: Individuals who are currently studying at university (undergrad or post-grad)
Students who have demonstrated a passion and desire to explore core tech development. We want to showcase the students who are building core technology - Encompassing Engine, Graphics, Rendering, Animation and all Low-level system programming.

These are the students that have exceptional technical knowledge, including C++ and strong Maths. They have a good understanding of performance and optimisation, and will typically have a good knowledge of Unreal Engine. The winner actively strives to solve difficult technical problems, learn more and deepen their knowledge of core tech programming inside and outside of their university course.

Technical Artist

Eligibility: Individuals who are currently studying at university (undergrad or post-grad)
Students who have demonstrated a passion and desire to explore Technical Art. We want to showcase the students that strive in acting as a bridge between Artists and Programmers working on a game.

These students will have a deep knowledge of 3D creation packages, such as Maya, Max, ZBrush, as well as knowledge of programming languages such as Python, C#, C++ and HLSL. They are able to show technical proficiency in areas such as lighting, rendering and texturing, are typically proficient working with Unreal Engine.
The winner actively endeavours to improve their knowledge inside and outside of university, ensuring art assets can be easily integrated into a game without sacrificing the artistic vision or exceeding the platform’s technical limits.

Student Game Award

SPONSORED BY

Epic Games

Eligibility : Games released during the eligibility period, created by individuals or teams studying undergraduate or post-graduate games or games-related courses.
Games do not need to have been created as part of coursework or as an academic project.

Student games projects published within the past 12 months, that demonstrate a strong talent and aptitude from its developer(s). These can be an individual project or a group project, either as part of student coursework or produced independently and extra-curricular. We want to showcase the projects that go above and beyond expectations & highlight students making excellent preparation for life as a professional developer.

Industry Collaboration

Eligibility: Universities and games industry studios.
Actively collaborative works between universities/students and studios within the past 12 months. This can be studio oversight or initiation of a course module, an individual project or a group project as part of an academic course. We want to showcase universities and studios that demonstrate strong interaction and build direct connections between courses and the games industry.

Examples include:
Projects with briefs provided by a games studio or students receive live game briefs.
Active studio involvement in the development of a game prototype.
Projects that are substantially supported by games studios through training and mentorship.


Graduate Employer Award

Eligibility : Studios and companies within the games industry who have hired interns, graduate or junior level staff during the eligibility period.

Games studios & companies that have demonstrated a positive and pro-active approach in hiring and supporting graduates & interns over the past 12 months. We want to showcase the studios that are doing the most to help the next generation of games developers, working towards a more sustainable future for the games industry.

These are the companies who take an active role in mentoring and supporting their junior staff, training them not just for their current role, but preparing them for their career ahead in games.

Graduate Impact Award

Eligibility : Individuals who have been employed within the games industry for 2 years or less, in graduate, junior and/or intern roles.

Recent graduates and junior staff that have exceeded expectations in a studio role. We want to showcase the staff that are making their first steps in the industry but are already having a hugely positive impact, not just within your studio but also towards the industry as a whole.

From graduates quickly becoming an essential and integral member of their team, to those already developing leadership potential, and to those in early stages of becoming key figures at industry events and outreach initiatives, we want to recognise the burgeoning efforts of these future games superstars & the benefits that graduate staff can bring to a team.

Search for a Star & Sumo Digital Rising Star Awards

These awards will be judged by a separate panel as part of the Search For A Star final assessments.

The Grads In Games Awards

Part of the Grads In Games initiative