What is Sumo Digital Academy – A brief intro

13th Sep 2022 Studio Life

The desire to acquire young, aspirational talent and bring them into its many creative studios is what makes Sumo Digital one of the leading video game companies in the industry.

We want to ensure that the next generation of video game developers, programmers and many others within the games industry is equipped with the latest skills and knowledge to create truly amazing games – right here at Sumo Digital, of course!

Back in September 2020, we launched the Sumo Digital Academy – focusing on training people in game programming and software development at our Sumo Sheffield studio. Since then, the Academy has welcomed two cohorts through its doors, eager to learn their trade and become fully fledged members of the industry.

If you’ve heard about the Sumo Digital Academy and want to find out more, we’ve put together a brief introduction to what it’s all about, and how it’s helping to shape future talent.



At the helm of the Sumo Digital Academy, you will find Dr Jacob Habgood, Sumo’s Director of Education Partnerships. Dr Habgood helps lead the apprenticeship training scheme in order to find new entrants and ultimately cast the net wider in recruitment, encouraging diversity and tapping into new sources of talent.

With over a decade of experience as a professional programmer and technical lead on console games, as well as being the former Director of the Games Britannia Festival, Dr Habgood brings a wealth of experience to the Academy and all its apprentices.



Not in the streets, but the Sumo Digital Academy is the first of its kind in the UK to offer a games industry programming course recognised by the UK government and the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education. The Academy offers opportunities to graduates from areas outside of games who wish to adapt their skill set and make the leap into the games industry.

The Academy is not just aimed at graduates though, as those looking for a career change, and those who are able to transition their abilities on the job, as well as skilled developers from other industries looking to transition into games, can also benefit from the programme.



Those who have joined the Sumo Digital Academy have gone on to join Sumo Digital in a full-time role, highlighting the benefits of having an award-winning company at the Academy’s roots. One fairly recent example is Emma Rogers, a Sumo Digital Academy 2021 graduate who is now a Programmer at Sumo Sheffield.



We, like many other companies in the video games industry, always strive to do more to be more diverse and attract a multitude of talented people from a range of backgrounds to join our family. The Sumo Digital Academy is no exception, as we also offer a Diversity Internship Training Programme.

This programme is specifically aimed at giving people from under-represented groups the opportunities to receive training and mentoring in games programming to gain insight into what it would be like as a career.



Even before reaching the graduate level, the Sumo Digital Academy has its sights on helping to inspire younger people into joining the games industry as a professional career choice. The Academy collaborates with schools and colleges with outreach activities that help nurture the next generation of potential programmers and developers – including on-site workshops, presentations, digital programmes and working alongside teaching staff.

The Sumo Digital Academy has a clear goal – to build a new generation of talent to make the games of the future. So, if this sounds like something that you’d be interested in, please visit the Sumo Digital Academy website for more details.

13th September 2022 Studio Life