April 13, 2010
Elizabeth Blevins, Director, Office of Communications
Office: (740) 351-3810; FAX: (740) 351-3179; Cell: (740) 464-4854
940 Second Street – Portsmouth, Ohio 45662
Web site: www.shawnee.edu
SSU Professor Tom Stead Receives First Place Award at
Federal Virtual World Challenge
Tom Stead, associate director for Education of the U.S.
Department of Labor WIRED Grant for Interactive Digital
Technology in Appalachian Ohio took first place in the
Government Contractor Visualization category at the
inaugural Federal Virtual World Challenge in Orlando, Fla.
He was presented the award at a luncheon on Wednesday, March
31 at the Defense Game Tech User’s Conference. Stead is also
retired chair of Shawnee State University’s Department of
Fine and Digital Arts and an adjunct professor.
The conference presenting the award provides a forum for all
of the federal agencies that are either using or planning to
use virtual worlds in training or data presentation.
Submissions came from the United States, the United Kingdom
and Canada and made use of a variety of virtual worlds, such
as Second Life, Active Worlds, Teleplace and 3DInternet. The
contest divided entries into four categories: Collaboration,
Skill Building, Instruction and Visualization.
On March 2, Stead was notified that the Power Plant project
he submitted was one of three finalists in the Visualization
category. He has been working with the U.S. Department of
Labor WIRED Grant for Interactive Digital Technology in
Appalachian Ohio with the Ohio Valley Interactive Technology
Alliance (OVITA), in partnership with Cyber Centers and
clubs, including the SSU Cyber Center.
The WIRED grant is from the U.S. Department of Labor to
develop information technology and interactive digital
technology skills for students from high schools,
universities and for displaced workers.
Stead’s project was building an AEP Power Plant simulation
in Second Life to use for public education and AEP training.
As a finalist in the competition, he had to demonstrate his
entry on the final day of the conference.
The Army has invited the finalists to present their entries
at the Federal Consortium of Virtual Worlds event in
Washington, D.C., May 13-14.
The U.S. Army Simulation and Training Technology Center in
Orlando oversaw the competition. Evaluators included judges
from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and
the Department of Defense, Homeland Security, Department of
Transportation and Health and Human Services.
To see a video of the project, go to www.youtube.com/watch?v=GH96FdhQBf4
or go to Second Life at http://slurl.com/secondlife/WIRED%201/59/36/41
as an avatar or join for free to create an avatar to see the
This is a photo of the Second Life project presented at the
Defense Game Tech User’s Conference on March 31 that took
First Place in the Government Contractor Visualization
category at the inaugural Federal Virtual World Challenge in
Orlando, Fla. Tom Stead, associate director for Education of
the U.S. Department of Labor WIRED Grant for Interactive
Digital Technology in Appalachian Ohio presented the
project. Stead is retired chair of Shawnee State
University’s Department of Fine and Digital Arts and an
adjunct professor at SSU.