From the beginning of each of our journeys in game development, we have been fortunate to have had mentors who have helped us succeed in our careers. We remember and honor these influential guides – they are the giants on whose shoulders we stand.

In our desire to give back to our profession, TLM is developing a global Centers of Excellence (CoE) program through which we focus on finding and supporting people and places that may currently be underserved in game development. We are committed to discovering, fostering, and mentoring the next generation of game developers through our CoE initiatives. After a deep analysis of potential areas of focus, TLM partnered with the Tecnologico de Monterrey (TEC) in Mexico to develop and launch our first CoE.

In the Fall of 2020, we were approached by the professors of the TEC game development program to explore opportunities to support them in their work. As they described their upcoming activities, which included participation in a global game jam, we committed to a review of the student’s games and added a twist to support them; we proposed the students continue the development of their concepts for an additional week after the Global Game Jam and prepare for our review in a subsequent TLM Game Jam. This provided opportunities for the students to polish their games – while giving us the chance to get to know each of them better. We also committed to providing cash prizes for the best new game concepts and noted our intention to offer internships to the students for the term beginning in January 2021.

On the day of the TLM review our team, which included our CEO, Chief of Staff, VP Creative, Studio Art Director, and Executive Producer, reviewed and provided feedback on the game concepts from the student teams. We gave honest, positive critiques supporting their creative vision and development. Frankly, we were stunned at the variety and quality of the games that were presented – a testament to the student’s passion and talent as well as the excellence of their professors and program.

After providing feedback, our review team met privately to rank the games and award the prizes. The energy and emotion this created within the student community were amazing and inspiring and we were thrilled to observe their gratitude and excitement in being recognized in such a positive way.

Through the game jam process we became acquainted with the students and they in turn were able to learn more about TLM. This established a foundation for us to provide internships for the 2021 Spring, Summer, and Fall terms. We love the students who joined as paid interns and have now hired two of them as entry-level artists. We’ve hired an additional developer from the game jam teams as a sound designer. We’ve also identified several of the student’s game concepts as legitimate opportunities as games for TLM to potentially develop and publish. This is our CoE mission – to foster their success and enlist them in ours.

Establishing a CoE requires four essential components:

  • An excellent University-based game development program
    • Outstanding professors
    • Great program components as evidenced in the quality of the student’s work
  • Experienced  Mentors
    • TLM’s developers and leadership have experience teaching, mentoring, and support for Universities such as:
      • McGill University, MIT, Rhode Island School of Design, Woodbury University, The Art Institute, Cal State Long Beach, Otis, and more.
      • We’ve led the development of some of the most successful game franchises in history and the teams that created them.
  • Professional Development
    • We create customized course modules to support the interns understanding and capability in professional practice and process
      • Course modules are 2-5 weeks in length – developed and led by our mentors
  • Real-world projects
    • Our interns learn how to work in a 100% remote, cross time zone,  global development team. We are 200 people strong in 25 countries around the world. The interns are given the opportunity to embed themselves into our fast-growing, diverse, and inclusive culture.
    • In addition to professional development modules, our interns work with lead artists/mentors on real projects critical to the success of TLM’s business initiatives.

The influence of the student’s professors and their course of study cannot be overstated. It is evident, in every interaction with the TEC program, how wonderfully prepared the students are – for their careers and for life. It’s an honor for us to be a part of their program. As we look forward to expanding our CoE initiative, we see the opportunity to connect students across the globe and to continue developing and supporting the diversity of talent that we are so fortunate to work with every day at TLM.

To keep up to date with all things TLM follow our socials