PRIESTLEY College Warrington has won a national award for its success in equipping students with the game design skills they need to break into a billion-pound industry.
Priestley won the Further Education Institution prize at the Grads in Games Awards where it was praised by judges for the content of its Computer Game Design course.
“Priestley College have shown they are continually developing their practice to teach the most up-to-date content possible and keep up with the changes in the industry,” said the judges.
“Their level 3 games course is considered one of the best in the UK, providing fantastic opportunities for industry collaboration and a great work atmosphere.”
Grads in Games’ aim is to help increasing numbers of graduates make the leap from student to professional developer.
Their FE Institution Award goes to the college that has done the most to help learners graduate into Higher Education or the industry.
Priestley was nominated by former students, many of whom are now on top degree courses or in employment.
“It’s amazing to have recognition from a panel of judges who are taken from across the industry, but this means so much because it came from our students,” said Tutor Matt Wilson.
Over the past nine years Matt and several colleagues have made the course at Priestley what it is, including Rachel Williamson who came onboard to develop the programming side of the process.
Together they have equipped dozens of young people with the skills and knowledge to thrive in the competitive gaming business.
Former student Matt Brett, who is currently finishing a third year at Falmouth University studying Game Development, picked up work immediately after finishing college.
He was employed to create the family sigils used in a Sky TV promotional campaign for the Game of Thrones TV series.
“What I learned at Priestley has set me up for a career in an industry that I love,” said the former Lymm High pupil. “I enjoyed the course so much I never wanted to leave the classroom.”
As well as praising the course content, Grads in Games judges recognised Priestley’s internship programme that is run in partnership with TT Games and is the only one of its kind in the UK.
“We feel Priestley College is an excellent example of the quality of teaching at FE level and we are very happy to present this award to them,” they said.