New Master in Entertainment Technologies is unique in the European Context

Launch of the Innovative Master in the European Context 

The Universidade da Madeira, the Entertainment Technology Center (ETC) at Carnegie Mellon University, Madeira ITI, and Madeira Tecnopólo launched, on July 19, the dual degree Professional Master program in Entertainment Technology (MET), running under the Carnegie Mellon Portugal program, it is partly funded by the FCT. This two year program will start next month with 6 students at the Universidade da Madeira.

"This is not a Master of Science nor a Master of Arts or Fine Arts degree – rather a unique, specialized degree program in the interdisciplinary field of entertainment technology," said Nuno Nunes, president of the Madeira Interactive Technologies Institute.

The Carnegie Mellon Portugal Professional Master of Entertainment Technology runs over a 2-year full time schedule, incorporating a three month summer break in which students are encouraged to complete internships. Starting in Madeira in September, all students will spend their first semester at Madeira ITI, the second at the ETC, in Pittsburgh, and then they will return to Madeira for the remaining two semesters.

Students in the ETC at CMU take courses ranging from computer programming to designing virtual worlds to improvisational acting, but the emphasis is on project courses. Each project course brings together interdisciplinary students teams that must produce working artifacts; in the tradition of Carnegie Mellon, the emphasis is on making real things that work.

A key aspect of the program is to ensure that students have the opportunity to work with a large, diverse set of collaborators with different skills and sensibilities. A typical project covers an entire semester and it is built around four or five students, a faculty supervisor and a client representative.

Don Marinelli, executive director of the ETC, believes in the importance of mixing computer science and arts. This innovative professional master, said Marinelli, is focused entirely on delivery to client. This, he said, is one of the big differences between methods taught at European universities and at American universities.

The session, held on July 19, 2010, in Madeira, was attended by Don Marinelli, executive director of the ETC at Carnegie Mellon University, Manuel Heitor, Portuguese Secretary of State for Science, Technology, and Higher Education, João Cunha e Silva, vice-president of the Madeira Regional Government, Castanheira da Costa, rector of the Universidade da Madeira, João Barros, national director of the Carnegie Mellon Portugal Program, and Raul Caires, president of the Madeira Tecnopolo.

July, 2010