You know how sometimes you are playing a game; things are moving fast, you are just barely managing to get by fumbling with the controller and trying to remember what you are supposed to be doing. Suddenly something epic happens and you have to pause just to take two seconds to reflect on what just happened. Well that’s what I did yesterday… Mia is off being presidential at AoIR, Lynn is in Vienna making propinquity, and everyone else is scrambling as usual. So I raced through a lecture on material culture and identity work, grabbed my bar mitzvah jacket (always at the ready on a hook in my office) and headed off to EV to catch the end of the official announcement of Mia’s research chair (along with the others in Quebec — a total of 7 for Concordia – ’tis big news for Concordians in general).
Well — its pretty much the worst kept secret in game studies but no matter… ceremonies and rituals are for creating that minute pause. I was there so at least I can convey the sense of what a monumental achievement Mia has earned ’cause she won’t tell you herself. How can we describe this? The top armour set in WoW (would that be a Tier 13 Raid set now?), an ultra-rare achievement in Halo… I dunno but non-canadian non-academic gamers need to imagine something akin to the highest level obtainable. This is one serious Ding.
Wanna see the other Tier 1 chairholders? Can I also mention… since I believe this has not quite sunk in, Mia’s chair is titled ‘Tier 1 CRC in Games Studies and Design’. So that’s one of a tiny handful of research chairs in game studies around the world and the only one (to my knowledge) that names the field as such. As someone, like Mia, who has been working to build an International field of research I see this as a major milestone that should help pave the way for other junior folks wanting to build careers in this area. Yeah its a symbolic gesture… but these have always been an important part of the mix.
’nuff said — I am not going to gush about how amazing Mia is and how great it is to have here at Concordia and working with TAG. You can read the press release (which also doesn’t say much) and find out about the CRC program here and on behalf of our hiring committee (the one that brought Mia to Concordia) and TAG we offer heart felt congratulations. Woot!
okay everyone back to what you were doing… there’s another wave of zombies coming.