In the final month of 2019, a brief look back on our 5 years in existence, and a look forward to UDEN #25 next month, plus details of exclusive discounts for UDEN members for the upcoming Tech Summit!
Perhaps the most predictable statement heard at this time every year, is: "Can you believe the holidays are here already? Where did the year go?". Isn't that always how it feels? Next month marks five years since we first proposed starting a group that could help bring together Utah's creators of digital entertainment, who were continuing to complain about a lack of coordination, sufficient funding and generally visibility for the work they do. That group became "MIU" - Made In Utah - which, after a couple of meetings, was renamed UDEN - the Utah Digital Entertainment Network.
I have to admit, back then I hoped we would have achieved much more by the year 2020 than we have, but it transpired that people and things move slowly! There is no doubt that one of the most useful things UDEN has achieved is a series of regular networking and educational meetings, which have fostered some impressive new collaborations and begun a sharing of knowledge among the membership. We have averaged 5 meetings a year, quite an achievement for such a small non-profit organization with no money and staffed by volunteers! But we're not sitting on our hands, we still have a long way to go; in particular we have been working hard on an Apprenticeship Program, which this year inched forward another few steps, and when realized, we believe will help fill skill gaps, foster a more ambitious and active community, and deliver economic growth in our sector through new startups.
Yes, things take time. Two years ago, UDEN partnered with Silicon Slopes, building a relationship that is about to bear fruit: for much of this year we have been working to create an entertainment track for the enormously successful Silicon Slopes 'Tech Summit' next month; it's an important recognition that the entertainment sector plays a vital role in the wider tech community and that sector is vibrant right here in Utah. In addition to keynote speakers from the industry and topics related to our sector, there will also be an area set aside branded 'Slopes Arcade', a gaming-centric space which will feature exhibitors, interactive experiences and an exciting eSports tournament for local schools, companies and stars from the eSports world, in conjunction with our good friends at Game Tyrant. Plus, in celebration, there will be one night set aside as 'Gaming Night', where attendees from the Summit can kick back, relax, have some fun and experience the best of digital entertainment.
We're confident that the entertainment track is going to become a key part of the Tech Summit in coming years, creating an exciting opportunity for all UDEN members. Please join us in making sure our community embraces this and supports Tech Summit! How? Read on...
NEXT MEETING - UDEN #25 - Slopes Arcade + Networking
UDEN is delighted to announce that UDEN #25 will be held during Gaming Night at Slopes Arcade.
We want to start 2020 off in a chill, relaxing way so we're not planning any speeches or presentations, but this will be an awesome networking opportunity so come prepared with your business cards or portfolio links and find your next great collaborator, client or contractor!
Of course you should be part of it! But also, please help us spread the word about Slopes Arcade and Tech Summit through your own networks! Let's get everyone locally involved and really get this off to a great start!
To attend, you will need to buy a ticket for either Slopes Arcade or for the full Tech Summit to be part of UDEN #25 and Gaming Night -- passes for Slopes Arcade start at $25 and if you register quickly you can take advantage of some exclusive UDEN member discounts - full details at the webpage here: https://www.utahden.org/uden_25. Remember, our last meeting reached capacity in less than 48 hours, and while there is a lot more room this time, we only have a limited number of discounted tickets, so get on this! As usual these are available on a first-come, first-served basis.
MAKE A PITCH FOR YOUR CHANCE TO EXHIBIT AT SLOPES ARCADE
Silicon Slopes is offering an incredible opportunity for a few UDEN members to show their products and services to the world for two days at Slopes Arcade. That's right - a free booth! You just need to turn up with your equipment, signage, handouts and you! To take advantage of this generous offer, you'll need to create a compelling pitch and submit it to Silicon Slopes as soon as possible! Here is what you need to do:
- Create a short video for Silicon Slopes, explaining who you are, what your product is, what you would show and how you would present it at Slopes Arcade
- Create a short written pitch as well, including links to relevant materials, as necessary
- Include your name, address, website and phone number in your written pitch
- Make sure to explain what the opportunity to showcase your work at Slopes Arcade would do for your business
- Email your written pitch (including the link to your video), using this link
If you would otherwise like to exhibit as part of Slopes Arcade, you should email Silicon Slopes to discuss booth space or sponsorship opportunities for this great event!
As always, there are many more events coming up that are of interest to UDEN members and you can see details of them all right here: https://www.utahden.org/upevents I look forward to seeing you at a few of them!
DON'T FORGET THE JOBS BOARD! HELP US HELP YOU!
Our website has a page where you can post open job positions, also where people looking can go to find them. The problem is, it's not being used that often so in reality, it isn't that useful for those looking to hire or those seeking work. Come on! We can do better! If you, or your company, has open positions, please post them on the jobs board. We can make this a useful resource for our community, but only with your help. It just so happens we have a couple of new posts so please don't let them get lonely! Here: https://www.utahden.org/jobs_board
Thanks for your continued support, and don't forget to be #UTProud!
Wishing you all a peaceful, happy holiday!
ON BEHALF OF TEAM UDEN
- Jon Dean
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