World games developers flock to Kortrijk to learn the art
The Kortrijk Bachelor’s training in Digital Arts and Entertainment which trains young students in video game development, is increasingly attracting attention from all over the globe. Students from as far as Canada, Sweden and the Czech Republic flock to West Flanders, where the course in Kortrijk is much cheaper than in their own countries. Last year Digital Arts and Entertainment, a training course at the Kortrijk division of the high school group Howest, where youths are trained to become video game developers or 3D artist, established a separate international class where students are taught in English. This has been received with much success, with ten students currently in their second year and a further forty starting their first year. Some of the students are Belgians who prefer to receive their training in English, while other hail from almost everywhere in the world, including Canada, Sweden, Finland, Spain, Portugal, Germany and the Czech Republic. In a matter of five years, this Kortrijk training facility has established quite a reputation, becoming a well known attender at annual industry events like the Game Developers Conferences in San Fransisco and Cologne, with interns and graduates collaborating on top games like Battlefield 3, Crysis 2, Killzone 3 and Split/Second. Meanwhile many of the Kortrijk graduates have also found a job as a game developper in Canada, Germany, Great Britain and the Netherlands. One of the trump cards of this training course is that it provides training in both graphics and programming, says the Game division’s training chief Rik Leenknegt. We plan to eventually present the entire game training course in English, but that will not happen overnight as the government of Flanders specifies that courses must always offer a Dutch option and cannot be presented only in English.