The seventh edition of the MIA Animation Conference and Festival will be held Oct. 13-14 at Miami Dade College, Wolfson Campus, bringing together world-renowned speakers and technology influencers from the nation’s top animation studios and universities, as well as the best talent in the industry. MDC is a prime host for the event considering that the College’s Miami Animation & Gaming International Complex (MAGIC) is home to one of the best schools for animation in the nation. In fact, Animation Magazine recently listed MAGIC among the top four schools for animation and visual effects in the United States. Mauricio Ferrazza, the founder and president of the MIA Animation Conference and Festival and chair of MAGIC, said the event has been growing exponentially since starting with 234 attendees its first year. “This is now a world event,” Ferrazza said. “We’re bringing in nearly 20 incredible guest speakers, mostly from Los Angeles and Canada, all whom have been highly successful in the industry and have a lot of valuable information to share.” This year’s event will focus on virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) technologies, emerging industries that MAGIC provides training for in its new VR/AR college credit certificate program. Festival-goers will be able to participate in hands-on software workshops, industry networking events and competitions that come with tangible career opportunities for the winners. One such opportunity is the animated film competition. Competitors from all over the world are expected to submit their films for consideration, with the winner receiving the chance to have a project screened at the 2018 Miami Film Festival. Those interested in a career in game design also have an opportunity for competition. Video game designers will be tasked with creating their own games, after which festival organizers will help them create business plans to potentially launch their products into the market. “The mission of the festival is to help students network and find their next steps,” said Ferrazza.
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