A recent survey by HBCU connection, on behalf of Microsoft found that out of 200 respondents, approximately 95% of college students and alumni from HBCUs across the country said they were interested in a career in the gaming industry, with 34% of respondents saying they specifically the program is interested in management roles, 24% are interested in engineering roles, and 18% are interested in gaming development roles. Marked this week National Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) week in the United States, held annually in September, is a White House-led initiative to advance educational equity, excellence, and economic opportunity through historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) to recognize and commemorate the contributions of these institutions to the United States Impact of HBCUs on American culture.
Gaming is a leading form of entertainment, but to date – only 2% of video game industry professionals are black, compared to 13% of the US population. In partnership with members of the Black Communities at Xbox, Xbox is attempting to improve upon this statistic and close this gap by nurturing Black and youth pipelines across the gaming industry. Introducing Project Amplify
reinforce project features fourteen black employees from across Xbox sharing advice, insights into their current roles and highlights from their time in the gaming industry. This video series aims to educate youth about the diversity of roles in the gaming industry while also highlighting some of the black people who work in those roles on a daily basis. On behalf of Black Communities at Xbox, co-leads in the video series shared their personal stories of their journey into gaming, including:
- “Growing up, I didn’t have much of an idea of what my career would be like. I chose college because I thought it would be a way to “get a good job” and escape poverty, but even as a freshman major in computer science, I still had very little knowledge of the opportunities available the technology industry offered me. Throughout my college experience and through internships, I’ve learned more about how big the world is – how many companies, careers, and ways there are to find or create a job you love. I want more people to know that they have options, nothing is impossible or unattainable for them, and encourage them to start pursuing their passions early.” – Q Muhaimin, Product Manager
- “In my early years I was more focused on what not to do versus what i could be It wasn’t until I grew up that I learned to use my passion for games professionally. I am now incredibly grateful to be celebrating 10+ years in my dream career and I hope reinforce project inspires people to dream and act for their own goals. As my coaches and mentors would say, “Play to win rather than play not to lose.” – James Lewis, Senior Business Development Manager
To launch this initiative, Xbox is partnering with the 2022 Revolt Summit x AT&T for a two-day event (September 24-25) to engage students and gaming enthusiasts through on-site industry panels and networking opportunities with members of Black communities available at Xbox.
For additional resources:
Learn coding basics and C# with the following tutorials:
- Introduction to C#: Written tutorial with sample projects that takes you from “Hello World” to numbers, loops, some basic data structures and OOP concepts like inheritance.
- C#101: A video series based on the written tutorial.
Once you’re familiar with the basics and C#, try Unity courses:
Download and learn the basics of Unreal Engine with tutorials:
Learn more about game design:
Some game designers at Xbox Game Studios found these two GDC (Game Developers Conference) presentations to be very informative and inspirational if you are interested in game design.
Learn more about the game development process:
Narrative tools to get you started:
- line: an open-source tool for telling interactive, non-linear stories
Art Tools to get you started:
- GIMP or Fell are great free resources to start learning how to use textures
- Start 3D modeling by using mixer