students slide down an inflatable slide

In photos: UTM Day of Play launches new game studies program

Nick Iwanyshyn

It began with a hand-drawn hopscotch court and ended with a panel of experts from the world of gaming. 

The University of Toronto Mississauga Day of Play saw the campus transformed into a day-long play zone last week, to officially launch a new game studies program in English & Drama and ICCIT along with recently acquired gaming-related materials from the UTM Library. 

Using chalk, members of the UTM community co-created a hopscotch court near the Student Centre and took turns trying it out. From there, community members were invited to visit the various interactive stations set up around campus. Finally, a symposium on the role of games in society rounded out the day.

Scroll below to see highlights from UTM's Day of Play. 

All photos by Nick Iwanyshyn.

Lawrence Switzky plays hopscotch
Lawrence Switzky, director of the UTM game studies program and a professor in the Department of English & Drama, plans out a hopscotch game at the opening event for the UTM Day of Play on Nov. 9.
Blue, pink and purple lighting in a Video Game Music & Food Chill Zone

The Video Game Music & Food Chill Zone in the Collaborative Digital Research Space (CDRS) during the UTM Day of Play. Participants were invited to relax with snacks including nachos and churros.

Arusha Pahore plays giant Jenga during the UTM Day of Play

Arusha Pahore plays with giant Jenga blocks near the Great Hall in Maanjiwe nendamowinan during the UTM Day of Play. 

Video game play projected on a big screen
Members of the UTM community play video games on a big screen projected onto the wall of the Great Hall in Maanjiwe nendamowinan.
Students play Uno
Students enjoy free candy and soft drinks while playing a round of Uno during a drop-in event at the UTM Day of Play.
overhead view of table top games

Most of the Day of Play events were drop-in so that UTM community members could participate in between classes or during a break from work. At this station, students could play various table-top games throughout the day. 

Animated story on a big screen
The MiST Theatre was the home for play-along sessions with professors and experts. Associate professor Felan Parker, left, of book and media studies at St. Michael's College, and host/emcee Ariana Ellis, a PhD candidate in U of T's department of history, participated in an afternoon play-along game session called "Untitled Goose Game and Finding the Goose in You."
Chris Young at a podium in the Library
Christopher Young, UTM library’s head of collections and digital scholarship, and the chief archivist of the library's Syd Bolton/Electric Playground materials, speaks during a symposium on the importance of games in society. The library recently acquired an archive of 14,000 computer games, consoles, magazines and related items known as the Syd Bolton Collection, as well as the archives of the Electric Playground, a long-running Canadian video-game show. 
Christine H. Tran, PhD Candidate in the Faculty of Information, speaks on a panel
Christine H. Tran, PhD candidate in the Faculty of Information, speaks on a panel along with other gaming experts during an event at the UTM Library to round out the Day of Play and officially launch UTM's game studies program. 


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