Over one hundred volunteers from throughout the UK have signed up to be Video Games Ambassadors, trade body UKIE has revealed.
The VGA scheme was relaunched at UKIE’s Westminster Reception in June, and aims to inspire the next generation to consider a career in the industry, create games and to learn STEM-related subjects, such as maths, physics and computer science, at school.
Once signed up, VGAs are only committing to one action per year. This could be half an hour talking to a local primary school assembly or an afternoon doing a workshop with a group of secondary school design students.
VGAs have already spoken to over 8,500 children in schools throughout the country, but UKIE has urged more volunteers to sign up.
“VGAs are at the forefront of promoting the industry to young emerging talent and having over 100 games industry people signed up is amazing,” said UKIE CEO Dr Jo Twist.
“But we need more volunteers. It is vital that we inspire children, particularly girls, from a young age and show them the huge breadth of opportunities available to them in the future – so if you want to make a difference sign up today.”
Alex Darby, a game developer and VGA spoke about the rewards of being part of the VGA community: “With the support from the team at UKIE, there’s now an active community of over 100 VGAs online sharing resources, trading tips about what works and what doesn't, and generally being way more effective than we were before.
“For me it's absolutely about being an active part of the change I wish to see happening in the world around me. With Ukie's support the sense of community and of shared purpose has really grown, and it makes you feel like you are part of something bigger than yourself - like you're more able to make a difference.”
Another ambassador, Ben Board, senior product lead at Boss Alien added: “The UK games industry is an amazing place to build a career, and many games people would be excited to evangelise that fact if they could get some help with the logistics.
“The VGA program provides the structure needed for that to succeed at scale, hooking up ambassadors with schools and helping with materials, and to have passed our first hundred VGAs is fantastically exciting - but just the start. Well done Ukie, Creative Skillset and all those VGAs spreading the good news.”
The VGA scheme is also part of skills body STEMnet’s wider Ambassador programme, which aims to get young people involved with STEM subjects and consider pursuing games careers.
Those interested becoming an ambassador should visit the VGA website.