What was your dream when you were a kid? To be a doctor, a lawyer or an engineer perhaps? About a couple of decades ago, those were still the relevant and typical professions that kids were often encouraged to pursue given the push from their parents who got it from their parents and it goes on, you get the picture. Fast forward to the present, those professions are still valid and relevant, in fact, the scopes are even wider but they are not the only professions looked up to in the digitalized and globalized world we are in now.
Breaking down the norms
There is a whole new field that lies within the digital and creative landscape that we’re exposed to now. The digital world has opened the doors for current and future generations to enter the domain of the lucrative digital media industry or also known as the creative industry since it largely extent towards content creation. Many youngsters now prefer to be a YouTuber, a social media influencer or vlogger and even a serious gamer. All of these jobs sound fun because they circle around our modern entertainment channels but its serious business, and okay fine it could be fun but hey, it’s like the old adage, “choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life”.
However, let’s focus more on the business sense. The digital media industry offers a variety of opportunities that cover and require expertise in almost all areas including the like of being a game tester. Yes, there is a job that requires you to play games and based on Sokanu, a career matching platform, it could earn you around $32,716 on average yearly in the US. The games industry is truly bankable and according to a report released by the Beijing-based market consultancy CNG, game developers and designers are earning a median salary of over $1562.5 a month in China as an example.
Game on at LevelUp@Schools UniKL
The hype of this new digital media field of work has certainly gone global and Malaysia has also become one of the fastest growing creative content industry. According to a report from the Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC), from a consumption standpoint, research shows a whopping US$587 million revenue forecasted in 2017 and in terms of market size, there are 14 million Malaysian gamers. Seeing the high potential and interest in this market, MDEC initiated an educational program called LevelUp@Schools. It consists of a two-day workshop with the objective to teach the basics of game creation and development. As a governmental institution, MDEC has been working with tech companies to get the support and gather industry experts to share experiences as well as inspire students via a real-time learning approach.
For the third consecutive time since 2017, Forest Interactive has been trusted to endorse MDEC’s on-going initiative with LevelUp@Schools. More than just being one of the main benefactors, Forest Interactive also took the chance to gather some of its employees as volunteers for each LevelUp@Schools program to be a part of the workshop where they help mentor the students.
We recently held our second LevelUp@Schools workshop for this year at Univesiti Kuala Lumpur (UniKL) where we had students from eight different schools all over Kuala Lumpur. We got the chance to get to know them and here’s an interesting story about one of them.
Meet Foo, a future innovator
Foo Heng Hoe, or we called him Foo, is one of the students selected from his school to join our recent LevelUp@Schools workshop. Everyone was amazed that this 17-year-old student from SMK Tinggi Setapak is actually a successful YouTuber having close to 500k views on his channel.
According to Foo, he started his YouTube channel from scratch and he was inspired to create it from seeing the people around him enjoy watching funny videos and parodies. “My first video on YouTube was recorded using a basic low-resolution camera,” said the 17-year-old student. He shared that he learned and did everything by himself. It was tough for him at first when he started at such the young age of 14 but he continued to learn and explore his talent for filming and video content. To have started that young, we find it’s pretty impressive that he had built a strong followership of almost 3000 followers on his channel. And we are even more impressed to know that this young creative mind is not stopping there. Foo also shared with us his interest in gaming and that he wants to make gaming as part of his future undertakings.
“The best part of the LevelUp@Schools workshop was using Unity engine and learning coding for gaming features, to know that I can create my own game and move the game characters around,” said Foo. Furthermore, Level Up@Schools is more than just about teaching students on how to develop games but it also to expose them to the career opportunities in the content industry. When we asked Foo about his career plans in the future, firmly he answered, “I want to do both videos and games. For the games, I want to create story games and fighting game”.
From Gen Y to Gen Z
“This event was very good and refreshing. It gives the kids of tomorrow ideas of what they can and they want to do, not what we did in my generation before. It is a very good exposure to them. We should continue, and we are more than happy to support as much as we can. Do not do something in a sake of just doing it. Do it with passion, do it because you want to do it, and enjoy the whole process,” said Jason Koh, Sales and Marketing Manager at Forest Interactive who was also our lead speaker during the workshop in UniKL. Together with MDEC, we are glad to be able to provide the platform for young talents such as Foo and all the other Gen Z to discover and have the first-hand experience to delve into the gaming industry which is expected to better drive the growth of our country’s burgeoning games and creative sector.
Interested to know more about our collaborative initiative with MDEC for LevelUp@Schools? Get in touch with us, we’d love to hear from you!