Sep 07, 2023 | Paola Pinto Jayde Holbrook, a recent Computer Science graduate from the College of Science at The University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH), has started her career in game development at Sledgehammer. Coming from Kentucky, Holbrook's path to success was paved with dedication, determination, and a passion for programming. Holbrook's decision to join UAH solidified when an admissions counselor visited her high school. Intrigued by what UAH had to offer, she saw the campus and immediately fell in love with its vibrant environment. In 2020, Holbrook began her academic journey at UAH, pursuing a Bachelor's degree in Computer Science with a concentration in entertainment computing. "Many organizations in the Tennessee Valley and beyond utilize what we call 'gamification' in their endeavors, and offerings by UAH's Entertainment Computing initiative help our graduates make meaningful contributions to such endeavors, which extend beyond science and engineering to business, health, and public affairs arenas," Dr. Timothy Newman, Faculty and Initiative Lead of the Entertainment Computing concentration at the Department of Computer Science. One of the standout aspects of Holbrook's educational journey was her unique experience at the Craft Academy for Excellence in Science and Mathematics. This program allowed her to accumulate an impressive 67 credit hours, most of which were successfully transferred to UAH, giving her a significant head start in her academic pursuits. Her dedication led her to excel in her studies and secure a coveted internship at Sledgehammer in 2022, a big player in the gaming industry; after graduating from UAH, she returned full-time as an Associate Gameplay Engineer. Holbrook describes her role as a dynamic mix of tasks, including creating new features and identifying and resolving technical issues in the video games. She worked on the highly recognized game "Call of Duty: Modern Warfare III," which was recently announced, marking a significant milestone in her career. Holbrook's favorite moments at UAH were undoubtedly the classes related to her entertainment computing concentration. She enjoyed all the courses related to artificial intelligence and game development, like Mobile Computing and Computer Graphics. Her passion for game development also took her to get involved with Charger Studios, a student club focused on game development. Collaborating with fellow students during game jams solidified her love for game programming. "Jayde is one of the many stories of fulfillment and achievement from Entertainment Computing students at UAH. Entertainment Computing can lead to positions with game studios, as Jayde achieved, or involving graphical simulation, science, and engineering applications," Dr. Newman shares. For those aspiring to follow in her footsteps, Holbrook offers valuable advice. She encourages professionals not to be disheartened by setbacks and to maintain self-belief despite rejection. Holbrook's journey to securing her internship included applying to 40 different positions, an example of the importance of persistence and resilience in achieving one's goals. On an educational level, she highlights the significance of coding skills and emphasizes the need for a genuine passion for the field.