Game Studio History

Game Studio

The History of The Game Studio at Champlain
The Game Studio at Champlain College started with our first degree: Electronic Games & Interactive Development (EGID). Founder Ann DeMarle consulted with industry professionals to develop a vision and a framework modeled after the industry. This original model contained one creative degree, EGID, with two specializations, art or design, and one technical degree, game programming. The first class had just 35 students and just one dedicated faculty member.

Our Evolution and Success
It's been over a decade since we started the Game Studio, and our game media offerings at Champlain have grown tremendously as has the number of students taking these course offerings. Today, we have 434 students enrolled in Game Studio degrees, and additional students participating in our courses from several other degrees and specializations.

Here is our current scope of academic opportunities for studying games and game-related topics:

  • 5 Undergraduate Degrees—Game Design, Game Art*, Game Programming, Game Production Management, and Creative Media BFA
  • 2 Graduate Degrees—MS and MFA in Emergent Media
  • 1 Minor—Game Programming
  • Dedicated faculty members across 3 divisions
  • 3 Specializations—Sonic Arts, Interaction Design, Educational Technology
  • The Emergent Media Center© provides Champlain's undergraduate and graduate students with vital, professional game development experience.
  • Study Abroad in Montreal—Montreal is the second-largest gaming hub in North America. Courses and programming for this campus take advantage of the resources and experiences available to students interested in game development.

Recognized for Excellence
In addition to our growth, we are also one of the top-ranked schools in the United States. In 2019, we were ranked in the top 20 of The Princeton Review's "Top Schools to Study Video Game Design." In order to do well in these rankings, a school must have a wide array of coursework to ensure students are well prepared, retain faculty with industry experience, provide extensive technological resources, generate employment opportunities and industry recruiting, and demonstrate that our graduates are industry ready. Champlain has all of these and is able to continue being successful due to the commitment of the College to the success of the Game Studio programs.

Proven Student Success
Evidence for the strength of our programs is in the success of our students in the industry. Our graduates are employed coast to coast and in Montreal by companies big and small. Our employment rate each year stays in the 80% range. Employers include Warner Bros. Games/Turbine, EA, Sony Studios, Bungie, and Microsoft. We also have begun to see successful pioneers in the entrepreneurial space with the launch of two companies with successful titles: Game Theory developing for the "social good" space and TooDX publishing for the WiiU.

A Bright Future
The first decade of the Game Studio has been about growth and improving our student experience and their ultimate industry success. It has been a decade of rapid change, excitement, and always striving to be the best at what we do and love. Our Center for Communication & Creative Media, labs and display spaces, a steady and strong interest by prospective students in our majors, and the continued support of the institution, the future for the Game Studio at Champlain College is strong and full of potential. The school motto is "Audeamus," "Let Us Dare." Ten years ago, we clearly did, and will continue to do so into the future.

*The program name change from Game Art & Animation to Game Art will be effective for the class starting Fall 2020.