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Inside Howest University: Equipping students for the entertainment industry

Howest University of Applied Sciences
2 minute read
Howest University of Applied Sciences

The RedShark team headed to the Howest University of Applied Sciences in Belgium to see what makes this school produce some of the best students in the entertainment industry.

Belgium's Howest University of Applied Sciences is a leading institution in digital art and entertainment education and is revolutionizing the student experience with state-of-the-art technology. Specializing in practical industry-relevant training, Howest offers cutting-edge courses in game development, animation, and digital design, preparing students for dynamic careers in the digital arts and entertainment sectors—no wonder it has been at the top of Rookie's ranking more than once.

As students enrolled in Howest Digital Arts Entertainment courses gear up for an 18-week internship, they face a challenge: executing group projects that demand powerful rendering and simulation capabilities within a short timeframe. Using software such as Houdini for simulations requires robust computing power and color accuracy to achieve visually stunning results. That means they need powerful equipment so that they can focus fully on their creativity rather than making sure they have enough time to render their final projects.

The Academic Director of Digital Arts Entertainment at Howest, Dries Deryckere mentions what kind of equipment the school requires for the students: "We need hardware capable of seamlessly handling intensive renderings while ensuring smooth visuals to bring our final projects over the finish line successfully".


Powerful hardware allows students to focus on the creative craft of their final projects fully

Serious Competent HDR monitors

For powerful displays, the university employs two ASUS ProArt monitors: the PA278CGV for benchmarking projects with its 144Hz refresh rate; and the PA348CGV for content creation and game engine work. Both monitors boast Rec 709 color space, crucial for working with Unreal Engine, and HDR capabilities for enhanced details during lighting work in Unreal Engine.

"We have higher brightness, more darkness, and together with the ROG gaming package, we have a complete setup. We can look and work with our software in a much more integrated way," says Deryckere.


The ASUS ProArt Display PA348CGV allows students to review their work on a larger canvas

The workhorse, aka workstation

Howest uses the ALTERNATE Workstation powered by ASUS, paired with the ProArt RTX 4080 graphics card to enhance performance. This dynamic duo empowers students to push graphics card capabilities further, especially when it comes to virtual production and rendering tasks. The workstation also features the ProArt Z790 motherboard, which facilitates the addition of monitors and other peripherals for optimal workflow.

"ALTERNATE Creator Workstation powered by ASUS is definitely a workhorse. It has a powerful processor, plenty of RAM and a fast SSD to ensure smooth and efficient operation. Whether we are editing high-resolution videos, rendering complex scenes or multitasking with various software applications, it handles everything effortlessly," says Deryckere.

The ALTERNATE Workstation powered by ASUS, paired with the ProArt RTX 4080 graphics card

Collaborative screening sessions

We met Dirk Lambrecht who is the driving force behind 3D Animation & Film coordination. In his role, Dirk oversees the group projects that form an integral part of every student's degree. These collaborative projects unfold through weekly supervisor sessions, offering the group to revisit and refine their collective work.

To provide students with a comprehensive view of their projects, Howest uses the ASUS ProArt A1 projector. Dirk mentions the importance of maintaining flawless color accuracy, bridging the gap from students' laptops to the screening room. Calman verified and equipped with an impressive 98% sRGB color space, this projector ensures color consistency across various screens in the grading studio. The result? A significant enhancement in color precision, elevating the entire group project experience at Howest University.


Dirk Lambrecht reviewing group projects using the ASUS ProArt A1 projector

With the implementation of ASUS ProArt hardware, Howest University now boasts a high-performance workflow, providing students access to industry-standard equipment. This prepares them to develop the skills necessary for internships and future careers, placing Howest at the forefront of digital arts education.

"In the evolving landscape of entertainment technology, the ASUS ProArt setup helps us iterate faster on our curriculum, evolve faster with the ever-changing landscape, and positions us as the best gaming school in the world once again," concludes Deryckere.

Tags: Technology Production