Greg Miranda

Visual & Game Programming

Adjunct Faculty, Visual Game Programming
The Art Institute of California—San Diego, a campus of Argosy University

Greg Miranda

Collaboration is central to being employed in any industry. Greg Miranda , Adjunct Faculty, Visual Game Programming , The Art Institute of California—San Diego, a campus of Argosy University
What would you say is the defining moment in your life when you knew you were destined to become a creative professional?

There are two instances. The first was when I was working as a senior engineer and other senior engineers were unwilling to mentor interns and new employees. This opened up an opportunity for me. After I graduated from my masters program, my professor mentioned that I could go into teaching. She connected me with the right resources to teach and I have been doing it ever since. 


How do you weave your professional background into the classroom experience to provide an industry veteran’s sense of the realities / challenges / opportunities of the
profession?

I teach students the skills that I know I needed when I was working as a professional and to answer the questions that I know they will come across in an interview. I want to help them develop the creative thinking strategies on how to learn on the job. I want them to know how to learn when they aren't in a classroom situation. 
In the software development class, I have students create a Clash of Clans style game. During the process, my students realize that they can make a game similar to one of the top-selling games in application stores across the world. By the end of the quarter when they finish, they realize that they can do this. It is one of the biggest confidence builders during the duration of their education. 

What role does collaboration contribute to students’ success…especially when students from other programs contribute to the same project?

Collaboration is central to being employed in any industry. As a programmer in the game industry, you just can't do it all. You need others such as an artist and project manager to fill in those gaps where you are not strong. The bigger the project you make, the more people it takes. 

In your opinion, what is the single most important thing you impart to your students 
to help them succeed in your class and in the real world? Alternatively, what is the most critical advice you would offer any student as he / she embarks on a creative career?

Don't be afraid to ask for help; that's why I am here. Too many students are afraid to ask for additional help. First try it on your own, but when you run into an obstacle that you can't get past, reach out—to your teacher or your friends. The only stupid questions are the ones you don't ask. 

Is there anything else you’d like us to know about you, your experience, or your role as a faculty member at The Art Institutes?

I was a software engineer for twenty years and have been teaching for over six years. My Masters Degree thesis was on genetic program, which is a program that will write another program. My favorite class to teach is Artificial Intelligence for Game Development. In this class I teach students how to make things move. Generally, artists make things look good and programmers make things move.