Joseph Quigley already has a game in the iPhone App Store and an internship with a major software developer. And that’s as a sophomore in college.
Although much of the credit for his achievements is due to his passion for computer science, Joseph also applauds the training and assistance he received in ACU’s SITC program, particularly in the field of digital entertainment.
“ACU not only provided me with a device to test and develop on, through the mobile learning initiative, but I was able to apply what I had recently learned in my classes. This allowed me to create a better product,” he said. His first iPhone game, Open Fire Gold, is an arcade-like military shoot-’em-up.
The SITC program attracted Joseph to ACU during his process of comparing colleges. He found in the program both a strong commitment to academic excellence and a dedication to living out the principles of faith.
Merging faith and career
“I was completely blown away by the SITC faculty. They were genuinely interested in me and excited to see what I had learned and worked on,” he said. “They were concerned with how computer science students can use their knowledge and abilities for Christ in their career. The fact that several of them have been and continually go on mission trips to other countries almost every year is a perfect example of how they put their beliefs into practice.”
Joseph put what he’d learned into practice when he started an internship with Milsoft Utility Solutions, which develops software for use in the electric utility industry. As a web developer, he has experienced the challenges and rewards of combining computer science with a business model.
“Within my first month of work I learned how much CS students need to understand company business practices and their company’s customer expectations,” he said. “I’ve also learned that in order to compete in the job market, we must be able to learn quickly and have a strong foundation in computing principles.”
One of Joseph’s main interests is digital entertainment. For him, digital media is a way to explore new applications of computer science while expressing himself as an artist and a Christian.
“I’m fascinated by digital media. I’ve always wanted to invent, create and explore, and I can do all of those within a single game project,” he said. “Digital entertainment is a relatively new way for artists to express themselves, and it is leading the way we as a culture live and interact with the world. As Christians we should be aware of the direction culture is moving so that we can best reach out, engage and witness to it. Being involved in the DET field is an excellent way to do that.”
He sees digital entertainment as a field that has a huge potential impact on businesses and on culture. And he’d like to be a part of those myriad possibilities.
Tip of the iceberg
“We’re only touching the tip of the iceberg as far as digital entertainment on mobile technology is concerned. We’re going to see smaller, more powerful and more immersive devices that are going to change the way we are entertained,” he said. “3-D and virtual reality devices like the Xbox Kinect, Playstation Move are going to be at the forefront of the digital entertainment world within the next two or three years, and they’ll be in our pockets – not in our living rooms.”
He believes ACU has already trained him to combine his interest in digital entertainment with a solid base in computing principles and an ethical background rooted in love for Christ. Joseph finds that combination demonstrated on a daily basis in the actions and lives of his professors and fellow students.
“Two things set ACU apart,” he said, “the caring spirits and patience of faculty who are interested in being a positive influence and career role-model to students, and students who care about their community, who have a heart for justice and who minister to those who are hurting or in need.”
With that foundation to support him in his career goals, Joseph is confident he can find a way to explore his goals as a digital artist while developing his computing skills even further.
“One of the best things about being a computer science major are the myriad of career concentrations available,” he said. “ACU has prepared me to combine my faith with my career, and helped train me to act responsibly, professionally and ethically in the workplace.”