Week 1 done – and what an excellent week it was.

September 23rd, 2016 by WEARN Nia

I’ve had the best week – Today held Games Studies 1 – Cornerstone of the new BA (Hons) Games Studies which I’m still stoked we’re running, and flexing academic muscles felt good, especially getting students fired up about research – then the 2nd years are embarking on a Solo Game Board Development Project. Earlier in the week was Fundamentals of Gameplay in the bar and handing over the group projects has been a delight.

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(This was before the rest of the class worked out their timetable had changed and come to find us) – but have 50+ student talk about gaming loves, hates and guilty pleasures was a delight – and reminded me why this is such a very cool job to have.

I’ve also worked out the perfect way to explain being a uni student to, well the students.

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I really get a sense this is going to be an awesome year =D

Hello Stoke

June 29th, 2016 by WEARN Nia

I think I spoke to more people yesterday as I unpacked boxes and set up my computer then I have in weeks at Stafford. Thanks to everyone that popped their head in to say hi and welcome us as we started sorting stuff out.

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So my new home is L312 Flaxman, in the corner where no one can see my screen,  Boxes all unpacked and ready for my return in August post FDG/Digra. and then before you know it it will be Welcome Week

Bye Bye Stafford

June 24th, 2016 by WEARN Nia

EU vote results aside today has been a long day for other reasons – it’s the last day I’ll be at the Stafford Campus (or any of us games staff will be) – which means the 3 years I spent as a student here between 2001 and 2004 and the last 10 years as a lecturer are at an end on this campus – and new adventures await in Stoke on Trent.

I remember coming here as a student, amazed by the amount of computers in the Octagon, that they promised that one of the engineering labs would be filled with computers (and it was, D11, it just took 10 years) and that it had an American Diner on site. I remember when The Lounge was Sleepers and Legends hosted BSE nights. I’m glad there will be students on site still, and I look forward to see if any of their international-ness leaks into Stafford.

In the decade I’ve taught  at the campus I’ve taught 100’s of students things about games and games design, run group projects that have made amazing games, hosted 6 awesome global game jams – (that will continue in our new labs without a doubt, I just need to work out where best to set up my camp bed), I’ve hosted a conference, and a European project visit (fewer of those in future I suspect), held interviews and done open days, sat in meetings, validated awards and built a snowman – I’ve been in 5 different offices across 2 different buildings, gained a sofa, a purple chair, horded post-it-notes – generally made myself at home. The last year especially has been fantastic knowing my son was in the one site nursery plotting his escape. (he too will move to Stoke with me so you can keep up with his adventures here) It’s been good, but all good things must come to an end.

I’m not sad about the move really – I like new challenges, and I’m looking forward to having more people around, our new labs, and just generally being a part of something a little more vibrant. I’ve always been envious of the attention payed to the Stoke campus and it’s courses and I can see the opportunities for our students and staff. In the last year I’ve barely had a week where I’ve not been on the other campus for one thing or another – so I know it well.  my desk is all picked out in my new office, I’m even looking forward to sharing with more staff again, as these last few weeks have been very lonely indeed. I’ve even had my last yellow food canteen moment today and I look forward to having some degree of choice at lunch times again. It will be a while before I can face a chicken wrap anywhere.

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So, come August, when I’m back from leave, and back from Digra/FDG you’ll find me in my new home, in my office in the Flaxman building- looking forward to new adventures and easy access to ice creams =D

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