13th January 2023
Epic Games’ Lead Recruiter, Joe Burridge, visits students for industry talk
“I recently visited South Devon College to talk to students about careers in the games industry and I was blown away by the passion and talent not just from the students but the staff too.”
South Devon College recently celebrated becoming the first college in Devon to strike a partnership with Epic Games’ Unreal Engine Academic Partner Programme. This came with a wide range of benefits that improve the experience of studying both at South Devon College and University Centre South Devon.
This connection with the industry-leading company led to a conversation happening with Epic Games’ Lead Recruiter, Joe Burridge. He then offered to visit the college to tell the students his story of how he has got to where he is and his advice for securing a career in the games industry, as someone who handles picking the right people for that industry every day.
It was an encouraging start for students when they discovered Joe resides in the local area of Newton Abbot and works for such a large scale and renowned company when many assumed you would have to move away to cities to work in the games industry. The reality is it depends on your role in the industry which there are many of.
A key part of the talk was the diversity of roles within the games industry. It’s largely the development of games which is the most thought about but there’s much more to it like any other business. Joe broke this down into Engineering and Corporate roles.
Engineering includes roles focused on gameplay, UI, cyber security, animation, data, machine learning, online and more. However, Corporate includes roles in account management, marketing, data analysis, HR, community operations, sales, and finance.
Joe got into recruitment after finishing university and started working at a couple of tech companies and a recruitment consultant for data science professionals before he did what we thought was just a dream and secure a job at EA Games and make his way into working in the games industry. After three and a half years, he moved to Epic where he has now been for two years.
Discussing the gaming industry and where it’s headed, Joe said: “It’s a fun, unique combination of art and science developing games and this industry is still growing rapidly. Games make more money than films and music combined. Our role isn’t just limited to games either. We’re keeping an eye on what the next generation of the internet will look like where our talent and technology in creating in 3D will become even more valuable too.”
Joe talked about the internship programme at Epic Games and how many interns return to work at Epic after completing their internship. Epic Internships happen year round with work terms ranging from 3-12 months. It’s a great way to break into the industry after achieving a qualification.
Following the talk and answering questions from both students and staff, Joe said: “I was blown away by the passion and talent not just from the students but the staff too. Also, the facilities and technology available to students is incredible. It’s clear to me that the team at South Devon College are truly nurturing the next generation of talent.”
Simon Thorpe, Head of Digital and Computing, said: “The high-quality presentation from Joe was a real eye-opener for our students to the employment opportunities in the gaming and digital industry. It also inspired our students to develop their skills further so they can succeed in what is a high profile and dynamic sector.”
If you’re looking to study and get into the Games and Interactive Media industries, then discover more about the Games and Interactive Media Extended Diploma Level 3 and FdA Games and Interactive Design which make the most of the Unreal Academic Partner Programme.
Did you know, South Devon College also offer courses in Esports? There are diplomas at Level 2 and Level 3 and they are another great pathway to studying FdA Games and Interactive Design at University Centre South Devon. You can visit the team at the next Open Evening on 11th January 2023, where there will be demonstrations of what you will do as part of the course and the facilities you’ll use.