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USC's Tracy Fullerton becomes first director of USC Games

Tracy Fullerton, a game designer and longtime professor at the University of Southern California, has been named the first-ever director of USC Games, university officials announced today.

Fullerton, who joined the faculty of USC in 1999, currently serves as the director of USC's Game Innovation Lab and the chair of the USC Interactive Media & Games Division at the university's School of Cinematic Arts. Her recent game design work includes Walden, A Game, a simulation of Henry David Thoreau's experience living at Walden Pond in Concord, Massachusetts, from 1845-1847.

USC Games is a partnership between the Department of Computer Science at USC's Viterbi School of Engineering and the Interactive Media & Games Division. The multidisciplinary program includes instruction in art, design and engineering, in an effort to produce well-rounded graduates who can work in fields throughout the game industry.

"Tracy Fullerton is the perfect choice to lead USC Games," said Elizabeth M. Daley, dean of the School of Cinematic Arts, in a press release today. "She is widely considered one of the world's most creative game designers. Her research and teaching treats game design as a collaborative endeavor that welcomes different approaches to creating games and gameplay experiences. The entire USC community will benefit from her leadership."

"I'm very excited to take on this new challenge in advancing USC's leadership in game education," said Fullerton. "Our programs have set the standard in this emerging field and now we are looking eagerly to define the next level."

Students of video games at USC have gone on to develop games such as JourneyThe Unfinished Swan and The Misadventures of P.B. Winterbottom.