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October 7, 2015

Each year at ACM SIGGRAPH, the world’s largest conference on computer graphics and interactivity, thousands of industry professionals, researchers, and students as well as hundreds of companies—including game studios, animation houses and visual effects shops—converge to share the latest technologies and advances. For almost a decade the Drexel ACM SIGGRAPH Student Chapter, with membership of 130 undergraduates, graduate students, alumni and faculty, has been a part of this thriving international community. This past August, over a dozen of our members traveled to Los Angeles for this year’s conference, which underscored the rapidly increasing importance of immersive experience content and technologies in these industries.

Members of Drexel’s SIGGRAPH Student Group volunteered at the conference, assisting with organization, guidance and support for the hundreds of talks and events. Group Chair Chris Cerrone and Vice Chair Ian Hartman arranged a well-attended Drexel Alumni gathering and an LA studio tour, featuring visits to major animation and visual effects facilities where alumni are hard at work. Special thanks are due to alumni Nate Shaw (‘11) and Dan Bodenstein (‘10) at Method Studios, Corinne DeOrsay (‘10) and Nate Lapinski (‘13) at MPC (Moving Picture Company) and Melissa Cell (‘12) and Girish Balakrishnan (‘13) at Digital Domain for helping to facilitate these visits.

Our SIGGRAPH chapter has played a vital role in advancing our Digital Media students’ knowledge of computer graphics and interactivity, as well as in connecting them to potential industry employers. Members of Drexel’s SIGGRAPH Student Chapter have also gone on to work at Dreamworks, Pixar, Microsoft, Disney, Method, Electronic Ink and many other industry-leading companies. At weekly student-run sessions, students gain teaching experience and leadership skills by teaching a special topic to a group of 25+ students in a friendly environment.

For more details about upcoming meetings and activities, visit the Drexel University ACM SIGGRAPH Student Chapter Home Page.