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DkIT Host ‘Girls in Immersive Tech’ Event

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DkIT Host ‘Girls in Immersive Tech’ Event

Dundalk Institute of Technology (DkIT) was excited to recently hold their first ever Girls in Immersive Tech Camp.  The overall aim of this inaugural event was to inspire more young females to pursue an educational journey and career in the Tech industry.  In a recent “Digital Creative Industries Roadmap 2024-26” report it highlighted the phenomenal growth opportunities and industry demand for content creation in Ireland which is currently underrepresented by females.  This camp provided participants practical experience of using new emerging technologies, creating immersive arts and animation in a collaborative community of practice with other like-minded individuals and it facilitated learning about new tools and techniques.  The event was a huge success and stimulated great interest and an enjoyable experience for all the young females who attended. 


The day commenced with an introduction to immersive technologies and XR (Extended reality). The participants then had the opportunity for creative practical activities to try the virtual reality headsets and create immersive art in 3D using virtual reality applications such as Google Tilt Brush and Open Brush. The girls also explored Deep Motion for creating personalised avatars and combined motion capture to create an animated sequence such as a dance or performance.  The group also enjoyed designing animated cartoons in Cartoon Creator as well as producing realistic 3D characters with animation in Character Creator.  In addition, there was the opportunity for all to try out Animotive by embodying an avatar in virtual reality.  Finally, they explored Frame VR for creating immersive interactive 360 environments and integrating their animated avatars that they had created.


When the students were asked what they learned about on the day the responses included,

“I learned how to use the VR headset for the first time”, “I learned how to make an avatar of myself move in 3D with Deep Motion”, “I learned about different tech programmes because we don’t do that in school”, “I learnt how vectorize on cartoon creator and animate character using a video as stencil” and “I learned how to use new software I’d never come across before”


Jackie Toal DkIT Lecturer highlighted: “The workshop provided the opportunity for these young ladies to experiment and to be exposed to many different tools in the immersive technology realm to provide a platform to stimulate interest for future career choices.  It also gave them opportunity for peer learning and to meet, collaborate with other likeminded females interested in these vocational areas.  It was fantastic to see them engage and produce lots of imaginative creative outcomes throughout the day, particularly as some participants had not used a VR headset before so it was great to see them experience this for the first time”.     


The day ended with reflections on future career choices and a presentation of certificates for engagement and participation in the event. DkIT reported “It was absolutely fantastic to see so many smiling faces at the end of this workshop and we hope we get to welcome these girls back onto campus as students in the future”.

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