Mason Korea Holds First Progress@Play Digital Art Competition with NC Soft and Gen.G Global Academy

photoMason Korea recently held an awards ceremony to recognize the winners of its first Progress@Play Digital Art Competition. Sponsored by NC Soft, Gen.G Global Academy (GGA), Game Culture Foundation, and Square One, the Progress@Play Competition was held from September to November to raise awareness on social issues emerging in the COVID-19 era and find solutions through digital media.

For a total prize money worth 4.6 million won, high school and college students in the Seoul metropolitan area were invited to enter the competition by submitting computer games, animation pieces, comics, drawings, and illustrations that present solutions to social issues. The submitted works underwent a vigorous initial screening and were displayed in a gallery at Square One Mall in Yeonsu-gu, Incheon leading up to the awards ceremony.

Mason Korea Computer Game Design professors Jared Bruhn, John McGrew, and John Doran, as well as external experts in the field evaluated the submitted works based on social value, completeness, workmanship, and originality. The works were divided into high school and college student categories with first to third place winners for each category. In addition, Viewer’s Choice awards were given for each category based on 160 visitor votes at the gallery.

photoSi Yeon Park, a sophomore creative software major at Sejong University, received the grand prize in the college student category as a representative of Sejong University’s BHP team. The team created an animated video called With, hoping that it would resonate with others who are going through similar challenges during the pandemic. “I believe that content can change the world and I will create better content in the future,” said Park.

Mason Korea’s very own G-nonymous, a computer game design related student organization, won second place for the college student category.

"It was intriguing to see how popular culture can be used to enhance education and society through these creatives works by students,” said Mason Korea Campus Dean Robert Matz, adding, “I hope this serves as a good opportunity to raise public interest in social issues.”

Guan Wang, President of Gen.G Global Academy, a sponsor of the event, was also impressed with the results of the competition. “Progress@Play is truly a demonstration of how we can turn students' interest and passion in gaming into something truly meaningful,” he said, adding, “It's been really exciting for us to work with Mason Korea on this initiative and hope that this can lead to something even bigger.”

Progress@Play was organized by the Office of Development and Strategic Partnerships in close collaboration with Mason Korea’s Computer Game Design faculty members. The team is planning to expand the competition next year to increase social impact both locally and globally.

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