Home Forums Education, Training and Jobs Crunch as part of an education?

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    • #7996

      So yeah its /that/ issue again. Crunch. Except this time it’s an article about Guildhall, that famous games development training college in the US, having their students working up to 20 hours per day.


      I’ve been through college and pulled a fair few all nighters myself, mostly due to bad planning on my part. Most people end up doing at least a few all nighters in university or college. However having the faculty actively encourage this and seemingly structure their curriculum to induce it crosses so many ethical lines.

      Their justification?
      "People always talk about the cruelty of military training, or of giving doctors 24 hour shifts during their residencies, but it’s not out of cruelty. That’s done because one day you will be called upon to work under extreme conditions and you need to be prepared."

      Yup, games development is exactly like going to war and is just as heavy a responsibility as working in accident and emergency. Hell, games cure cancer.

      Soldiers and doctors work in life or death fields, being trained to operate at a base level of efficiency under extreme circumstances is necessary in these fields or someone tends to die. Computer games are not and never will be life or death.

      How can anyone justify, actively endorse and condition their students to accept horrendous working conditions? Honestly we’re making entertainment here, is it such a shocking concept that we should have pleasant working conditions while producing a commodity?

      Oh and these students are getting a bum deal too, their expectations are being set too high apparently.

      "However, industry guests often point out a key difference during their visits – the Guildhall facilities are too nice. Some have suggested that they create unrealistic expectations."
      Oh my, how we spoil our youth.

      I’m all for comprehensive training and education in college. I’m all for setting realistic expectations for students. I object strenuously to the notion that they should be expected to work 60-70 hour weeks(even if it’s only for a few weeks/months), on mediocre salaries with no paid over time, on a limited rolling contract and frequently without any bonuses.

      If one of the most succesful colleges in the world is doing this, how long before others will start to adopt similar practices?

    • #46700

      I voted "yes".

      I think that it’s useful for a college to give students an idea of what they are in for once they graduate. I benefited a lot from a months of crunch while studying. I felt once I got through those months I could handle practically anything in the real world – I learned the value of planning, being able to prioritize and coffee.

      It sounds really dangerous to work people like they claim to do at Guildhall. There are so many health problems – physically and mentally – that can crop up. I think it’s a poor analogy on their part to compare it to the military or the medical profession and it smacks a bit of macho BS.

      Although without any personal experience of the games industry and having read the likes of EA_spouse style articles maybe they are trying to prepare their students for a life of being underpaid and grossly overworked.

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