DigiPen’s University Professors
Professors at the DigiPen Institute of Technology come to the school with a wide range of academic credentials and real-world industry experience. Open World consults with DigiPen faculty advisors to ensure that the summer workshop curriculum we’ve developed is appropriate, engaging, and relevant for our students.
Open World Team
DigiPen’s University Professors
Dr. Barnabas Bede earned his Ph.D. in Mathematics from Babes-Bolyai University of Cluj-Napoca, Romania. His research interests include Fuzzy Sets, Fuzzy Logic and Image Processing. He serves as editorial board member of the journals Fuzzy Sets and Systems and Information Sciences. He has been with DigiPen Institute of Technology since 2011, serving as a department chair and program director for the BS in Computer Science in Machine Learning degree.
Victor Cecci is a software engineer and game designer who teaches programming to design students at DigiPen Institute of Technology, where he also earned his BS in Computer Science and Game Design and MS in Computer Science. He’s worked on several projects for DigiPen’s Research and Development team, including Sandblocks, an educational game-building tool for kids; the Wellbody Academy interactive exhibit at the Pacific Science Center; and the Zero Engine, a custom game engine developed at DigiPen.
Justin Chambers is a graduate of DigiPen, having earned a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science in Real-Time Interactive Simulation in 2009. After working in the industry for several years, Chambers returned to DigiPen in 2016 to teach. He shares from many valuable perspectives — as a former student of DigiPen, a professional in the game industry, and now as an instructor of future game industry professionals.
Dr. Charles Duba earned a BS in Physics from UC San Diego and an MS and Ph.D. in Physics from the University of Washington at the Center for Experimental Nuclear Physics and Astrophysics. He continues to work on neutrino detection experiments, currently with HALO, a long-term supernova neutrino detector at the SNO lab in Sudbury. His research interests are in weak-interaction physics, physics instrumentation, physics simulation, augmented reality, and hardware design.
Andrea Ellinger graduated from DigiPen with a Bachelor of Science in Engineering and Sound Design with honors. She worked in DigiPen’s Research & Development Department for several years, helping to develop multi-channel 3D audio for the Zero Engine, an advanced, full-3D game engine. She began teaching at DigiPen in 2021, becoming a full-time lecturer in 2022. Her primary focus is low-level and engine programming in languages like C++, but also has experience with web programming, audio design, and production..
Ben Ellinger is Vice President of Software Production at DigiPen and has been with the school since 2003. He entered the games industry through tabletop game publisher Steve Jackson Games, where he worked on games such as Car Wars and GURPS. He has been a full-time developer and program manager at Microsoft and has contributed to video games such as Ultima Online, Ashen Empires, The Matrix Online, and Microsoft’s secret Natal prototype project.
Jazno Francoeur began his career as an intern at the Walt Disney Feature Animation studio in 1990. After graduating from Kansas City Art Institute, he joined Disney studios as an effects animator, contributing to classic films that include Lilo & Stitch, Tarzan, Mulan, Pocahontas, The Lion King, Beauty and the Beast, The Emperor’s New Groove, and The Hunchback of Notre Dame. Jazno joined DigiPen in 2004, and has served as a program director and senior lecturer.
Zahra Haghiri graduated from DigiPen with a BFA in Digital Art and Animation. In DigiPen’s Research & Development Department, she created assets and artwork for clients such as Renault F1 and Andretti Autosport, as well as for DigiPen’s Zero Engine asset store. In the games industry, Zahra’s contributions have included works to titles such as Pandemic, Pandemic Evolved, Invoker, Santa Sling, and Nightmare Grotto. As a faculty member, she teaches digital painting and character design to DigiPen’s students and enjoys doing what she loves most: painting, drawing, and sharing what she’s learned.
Jeremy Holcomb is the program director for the BA in Game Design degree at DigiPen. He has extensive experience in the design, development, and marketing of tabletop board and card games, with over 20 board game design credits to his name. His game The Duke, which he co-designed for publisher Catalyst Game Labs in 2013, earned a 2014 Mensa Select award. At DigiPen, he designs and delivers course content on the fundamentals of game design, with a special focus on rapid system design and playtesting.
Ebae Kim graduated with a major in illustration from the Rhode Island School of Design and has since worked in industries that comics, video games, corporate consulting, animation, live-action film, and board games. She has worked at the MIT Game Lab (where she contributed to the award-winning physics game A Slower Speed of Light), Space X, and Wizards of the Coast. Ebae has taught at DigiPen Institute of Technology since 2019, administering courses in comics, storyboarding, and game and film projects.
Dr. Erik Mohrmann is DigiPen’s Dean of Faculty. He studied psychology and physics at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, New York, and earned his doctorate in physics at the University of Washington in Seattle. His academic interests include learning models, the biological basis of behavior, nuclear astrophysics, and computational physics simulation, with most of his research in the latter two areas. His current research interests include stellar nuclear reactions and the modeling of deformable bodies.
Bill Morrison has over 20 years of experience in the video game industry, having worked for companies like LucasArts Entertainment and Microsoft. He has contributed to a number of successful titles and franchises, including the Star Wars: X-Wing space combat series, Star Trek: Bridge Commander, and Crimson Skies: High Road to Revenge. Bill is a senior lecturer in DigiPen’s Department of Game Software Design and Production. He joined the school in 2009, where he helped forge the DigiPen-Ubisoft partnership at the school’s Singapore campus.
Douglas Schilling has over 23 years of professional programming experience in several diverse industries, including avionics, desktop publishing, game development, and information technology management. In the games industry he’s worked extensively on hand-held gaming platforms, such as the Game Boy, Game Boy Advance, and Nintendo DS. He also worked on titles for the PlayStation, PlayStation 2, Wii, and Xbox 360. He’s contributed to over 40 titles in a number of roles, including lead programmer, senior programmer and studio technical director.
Lawrence Schwedler earned a Master of Fine Arts degree in classical guitar performance with a specialization in electronic music from the University of California at Los Angeles in 1993. He has worked as a composer, sound designer, and audio director in the video game industry for developers such as The Dreamers Guild, JVC Digital Arts Studio, and Nintendo Software Technology. He has been with DigiPen since 2011 and has served as the program director for the BA in Music and Sound Design and BS in Computer Science and Digital Audio degree programs.
YZ Tan began his animation career developing 3D-animated TV series for Southern Star’s studios in Singapore. His experiences led him into the games industry, working for Koei Entertainment Singapore and LucasArts, where he contributed to the Star Wars: The Force Unleashed and Star Wars: The Clone Wars game franchises. He joined DigiPen’s Singapore campus in 2010 and has served as a senior lecturer and chair of the school’s Department of Animation and Production.