It's almost taken for granted that game design is still a field that's largely oriented toward a male audience. That's changing over time, and the MMO genre has attracted a huge number of female gamers, but there's still a great deal of room for improvement. That's why Sony Online Entertainment
has sponsored the G.I.R.L. program
, a $10,000 scholarship for women majoring in creative and applied arts with an ultimate eye toward game design. And the 2010 winner of the scholarship has just been announced: Sylvia Liu, an entertainment design student attending Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California.
The G.I.R.L. program (the acronym standing for Gamer In Real Life) has been running for three years now, with Liu as one of over 200 applicants in this year's contest. Each participant was tasked with creating original concept art for a new creature and area in either EverQuest II
or Free Realms
, as well as submitting an essay about women in the video game industry. Our congratulations go out to Ms. Liu for her winning submissions. Those interested can take a look at the official site for G.I.R.L.
, which has her concept art on display as well as a short interview.