Entertainment Software Association (ESA) president and CEO Michael Gallagher went before the United States House of Representatives' Committee on Science, Space, and Technology to promote the use of video games and game-like technologies for educational purposes. The talk, entitled "STEM in Action: Inspiring the Science and Engineering Workforce of Tomorrow," was meant to emphasize the fact that games are very effective in encouraging children to pursue careers in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM).
"We commend Chairman Hall and Ranking Member Johnson for their leadership on this issue. Our industry’s interactive technology provides students with a new mode of learning,” said Gallagher yesterday before the committee. "With the power to improve critical thinking and problem solving skills, games are next-generation learning tools that have the potential to transform the educational experiences of children across the country. We encourage educators and policy makers to take steps now to incorporate these resources into classrooms and ensure that our young people are equipped for success in emerging STEM careers."
The ESA has certainly done its fair share of heavy lifting when it comes to STEM; the trade group heavily promoted the Educate to Innovate STEM campaign launched by the Administration in 2009 and partnered with the White House Office of Science Technology Policy to organize the national STEM Video Game Challenge. It also offers annual scholarships to students interested in perusing an education that will lead to game development, and its president – Michael Gallagher – has served as a judge for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Apps for Healthy Kids competition.