Trisha Nguyen serves as a lead lab technician at the Imaginarium, currently a graduate student majoring in Engineering Management & Leadership (EMGT) after completing an undergraduate degree at SCU with a major in Computer Science & Engineering (COEN) and a minor in Digital Filmmaking (COMM). Trisha’s passion for research shines through the development of RestlessVR, a VR experience addressing social anxiety, and through leading the Game Studies group under the Media Lab, delving into the captivating dynamics of fandom and video games. Trisha has notably presented and published research exploring parasocial relationships between fans and characters.
Trisha unexpectedly became involved with the Imaginarium after impulsively enrolling in an independent study class on VR development. As a commuter student, Trisha would spend a considerable amount of free time in the Imaginarium, engrossed in working in VR and the vibrant atmosphere the lab offered. Trisha treasures the diverse community that frequents the lab, each member bringing unique interests and projects, taking delight in introducing newcomers to VR, sparking their sense of wonder and exploration. For Trisha, the Imaginarium has evolved into a second home, looking back fondly on creating intricate mind maps when exploring new concepts and ideas, some so massive to the point even the Professor is taken aback by the giant, messy diagrams sprawled across the whiteboard.
Beyond academic endeavors, Trisha maintains a deep appreciation for character-driven media and the exploration of human cognition. It’s been warned that if one of Trisha’s media interests gets brought up, your ear may be talked off. Trisha’s motivation emanates from a desire to collaborate, contribute to meaningful projects, and connect with others, which she has found within the Imaginarium's dynamic community.
Nguyen, T. M., Khadadeh, M., & Jeong, D. C. (2023, April). Shippers and Kinnies: Re-conceptualizing Parasocial Relationships with Fictional Characters in Contemporary Fandom. In Proc. of the 18th International Conference on the Foundations of Digital Games (pp. 1-12). https://doi.org/10.1145/3582437.3582476