The Power of Progress: Employee Networks and Social Impact team partner together to diversify the gaming industry

An event nearly a year in the making, Employee Networks (eNets) leaders in partnership with Social Impact team members from the Diversity, Equity, Inclusion (DEI) team hosted Gameheads – a Social Justice Fund partner – for a private tour of Sony Interactive Entertainment’s (SIE) San Mateo HQ.  

Gameheads, a Bay Area-based nonprofit, has a long history with Sony Interactive, with colleagues from across PlayStation Studios serving as mentors and advisors in several of the organization’s programs. Gameheads uses video game design, development, and DevOps to engage, prepare, and train young and aspiring student developers from historically disadvantaged communities across the Bay Area for careers in the tech and video game industries.  

Members from eNets (Unidos@PlayStation*,  Black@PlayStation*, and API@PlayStation*) and the DEI Social Impact team partnered to host a private tour. This special event was designed to continue efforts to diversify the gaming industry, while offering the next generation of talent a peek into the day-to-day business of game development. The day was filled with bustling sights and sounds as students were able to get a firsthand look at how PlayStation Studios push the boundaries of play in our industry.  

*Unidos@PlayStation is an eNet focused on educating employees within SIE about the various identities and cultural differences within the Latinx/Hispanic community, while simultaneously helping to make PlayStation a great place to work and play for Latinx/Hispanic employees.

*Black@PlayStation is an eNet focused on fostering the inclusion and advancement of employees that identify as Black or of African descent.

*API@PlayStation is an eNet focused on encouraging members of the SIE community and allies to promote, educate and advocate for diversity, inclusion, professional development, and awareness of the Asian and Pacific Islander experience and culture while providing a shared safe space.

Volunteers bring SIE HQ to life during tour with Gameheads students

The tour started with a morning program and welcome remarks from eNet and Social Impact leaders. Students were then led on a tour around the San Mateo campus, introducing them to employees and showcasing several PlayStation Studios teams, including Music and User Research.  

In the music studio, students watched a PlayStation Studios Production Coordinator edit music in real-time. Students then learned more about the process of decoding game users’ behaviors, motivations, and needs from a PlayStation Studios Project Manager and Accessibility Researcher. 

Following the tour, the group took part in a fireside chat featuring SIE employees from a variety of teams. The panelists discussed their individual journeys, including how they landed in the game industry and at SIE; they also shared what they believe to be the value of diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging in their work and within the culture of SIE. The fireside chat closed with a live Q&A, with career and training questions being the most asked among students. Closing out the day’s events was a special networking reception where students met with SIE staff one-on-one for career coaching and advice.  

Stay tuned for more Gameheads updates and SIE’s upcoming welcome of our PlayStation Career Pathways scholars.