The Screen Industries Research and Training (SIRT) Centre is one of Sheridan’s Research Centres, committed to working directly with industry partners on innovation and training projects while infusing new knowledge into Sheridan’s curriculum. SIRT was established by Sheridan in 2009 and works extensively with students and faculty/staff in areas such as applied learning and research. The Centre has also been made possible by government funding from provincial and federal government levels.
Located at Pinewood Toronto Studios in the heart of the city’s film and television studio district, SIRT is a premier destination for training, collaboration and creation for the screen-based industry in Ontario and around the world. Our state-of-the-art production studio and lab facility is a content creator’s dream come true.
Together with our partners, we explore and evolve digital image capture and creative processes for the film, television and gaming industries. Currently, the Centre is focusing on developing and enhancing technology in workflow, stereoscopic production, previsualization, virtual reality & 360 filming, digital cinema, virtual production, and remote and real-time collaboration.
Our cutting-edge equipment sets the industry standard. When you step on to our fully-equipped 10,000 square foot sound stage, you’ll feel like the research, training and production possibilities are endless. Advanced digital cinema cameras, motion capture technology and leading edge virtual reality technology are ready and waiting for your next project.
Our Technology Access Centre (TAC) designation is one-of-a-kind in Canada. As a Digital Media TAC, designated by the Federal Government, we are able to offer evolved and specialized services to companies, organizations and guilds locally and globally.
Are you ready to collaborate with us?
Meet The Team
Dean of InnovationRead More
John Helliker is the Dean of Innovation and Engagement at Sheridan College and the founder of SIRT. John has been an inspiration at Sheridan College since 2005, initially teaching direction and pre-visualization as a faculty member. Prior to this, John worked extensively and successfully as a director and writer within the Canadian film and television industry. In 2012, John was presented with Ontario’s prestigious ORION Leadership Award for Higher Education. In 2014, he was awarded the Association of Canadian Community Colleges National Leadership Excellence Award, which recognizes his innovative work at SIRT. Currently, his creative and research focus is on virtual reality, empathy and social action.
David Dexter is the Director for SIRT—Screen Industries Research and Training Centre—at Sheridan. The Centre focuses on innovation in the creative industries by enhancing technology and training in VR/AR, Digital Cinema, Virtual Production, Intelligent Digital Humans and Remote and Real-Time Collaboration. David has been integral in transitioning SIRT into a sustainable research and technology access centre. Twenty-five years of experience in multiple industries, including mobile (Nokia), technology (IBM) and music, combined with an acumen for business development and delivering cutting-edge products to market, makes David a leading expert in bridging the gap between training, technological development and studio production.
Manager, SIRT ProjectsRead More
Bronwyn MacDowell is SIRT’s project management expert. As the Project Manager at SIRT, she leads and participates in full cycle applied research processes and ensures accountability for the efficient and compliant management of records and information assets. She graduated from Brock University with a Bachelor of Arts in Film Studies and completed a Post Graduate Degree in Project Management at Sheridan College. With over seven years of project management experience, Bronwyn provides coaching and mentorship to project leads and team members to ensure successful project deliverables meet deadline requirements. In addition, she works closely with the Director to develop new research project opportunities that place SIRT at the forefront of Canadian Research Centres.
Virtual Production LeadRead More
Spencer Idenouye is the Virtual Production Lead at SIRT. As part of a collaborative team, Spencer is creating an integrated virtual production studio for training, applied research and commercial services. He provides leadership and expertise in applied research and technical research for the movie, television and gaming industries, and is focused on the application of VR technologies. Spencer’s education is extensive: A Masters in 3D animation, BFA in Media Arts & Digital Technologies and two post-graduate diplomas in Directing and Editing in Advanced Television and Film and Computer Animation Digital Visual Effects. His expertise includes directing, editing, VFX artistry, cinematography, digital content production and motion capture.
Visual Effects & CG LeadRead More
Stephan has been a VFX Supervisor, Technical Director, CG artist, animator, compositor and designer in the commercial and VFX industry. He has over 15 years of award-winning experience as well as 5 years of postsecondary teaching under his belt. Stephan has worked with big clients such as Alliance Atlantis, IMAX, Corus Entertainment, Coca-Cola, Disney, Paramount and many others. He has extensive knowledge of many software platforms including Maya, 3DS Max, Zbrush, Substance Painter, Marvelous Designer, Unreal and 3D scanner to name just a few. Currently, he works with industry partners, Sheridan faculty and students to create high-quality content for tech markets and develop new strategies for current technologies. Furthermore, he is doing extensive research and development work with virtual humans and digital double creation for virtual reality, gaming and broadcast.
Software Engineering LeadRead More
Mike takes lead on projects that involve substantial programming, software architecture, or software integration efforts. Mike has an extensive background in virtual reality and augmented reality; he previously served as the Head of Software for Sulon Technologies, a company that created one of the world’s first standalone augmented reality headsets. Years of working as a software engineer in the games industry have also provided him with experience in a diverse range of programming languages and platforms, and have allowed him to express his great passion for delivering compelling experiences to others.
Production LeadRead More
As the Production Lead, Jason Hunter is the cinematography specialist at SIRT. His interest in film production began at a young age, watching diverse movie genres with his father. He was compelled to express his own stories through narrative storytelling and virtual production that would transport audiences into different worlds. Jason graduated from McMaster University with a double major in Theatre and Film as well as Multimedia and later obtained his Advanced Film and Television Certificate from Sheridan College. His extensive visual effects, motion capture, and 360 video production knowledge support applied research to local SMEs in adopting virtual and augmented reality technologies.
CGI SpecialistRead More
Val Bachkarova is the CGI Specialist at SIRT. Her admiration for video games began at a young age, which led to her specialization as a 3D Artist in design, creation, texturing and artwork optimization within the Unity engine. Val’s extensive knowledge is a key component to ensuring high-quality research results at SIRT. To support her work, Val’s academic history includes graduating from Humber College with a 3D Animation Art and Design Advanced Diploma. She has over three years of teaching experience as a Video Game Design Instructor and applies her advanced knowledge of Adobe Photoshop, 3Ds Max, MudBox, Unity, Unreal, Substance Painter, Substance Designer, and Faceware Suite on a daily basis.
Software Engineering ResearcherRead More
As a Software Engineering Specialist, Vlad Bronowicki specializes in game unity engine projects. He graduated from Humber College with Game Programming Diploma as well as a Software Development Network Engineering Diploma from Sheridan College. Vlad is a vital asset in providing guidance and assistance to SIRT's Co-op students throughout their work term.
Software Engineering ResearcherRead More
Mohammad is a graduate of the Sheridan College Bachelor of Computer Science (Mobile Computing) program. He has experience in programming in game engines such as Unreal and Unity, as well as mobile app development. He has also worked on projects utilizing new technologies such as virtual and augmented reality.
Junior Film Production SpecialistRead More
Kevin Santos is the Junior Film Production Specialist at SIRT and his exceptional filming talents make him a key asset to the SIRT team. His specialities include recording, capturing, and editing behind-the-scenes video and photo content of our various research projects at SIRT’s Stage 10 studio in both traditional and 360 video formats. Through his production skills and creative edge for video recording, Kevin captures high quality, anecdotal content that reflects SIRT Centre’s innovative research and development capabilities. Kevin graduated from Sheridan College with a Bachelor of Film and Television Degree, focusing on cinematography and visual effects.
Junior Film Post-Production SpecialistRead More
Emerson Chan is the Junior Film Post-Production Specialist at SIRT. Emerson has a keen eye for storytelling and uses this to create engaging video content that highlights SIRT Centre’s work with industry partners on innovation and training projects. He is highly proficient with multiple NLE’s including Adobe Premiere, Avid Media Composer and DaVinci Resolve. Emerson has a meticulous work ethic with a love for collaboration, making him a vital asset to SIRT. Emerson graduated from Sheridan College with a Bachelor of Film and Television Degree, focusing on editing and motion graphics.
Project and Office CoordinatorRead More
Kirstin Bourne is the Project and Office Coordinator at SIRT. As part of the operations team, Kirstin provides support to multiple departments, including Finance, Marketing and Project Management. In addition, Kirstin is responsible for the on-boarding of Sheridan students who complete co-op placements at SIRT. Kirstin obtained a Bachelor’s of Science and a Master’s of Science degree from the University of Toronto and has several years of experience working in operational roles for environmental organizations and academic institutions.
Marketing LeadRead More
Cheryl Noseworthy is the Marketing Lead at SIRT. She is responsible for the promotion, communications and marketing of the Research Centre to their varied external stakeholders in the media and screening industry. Cheryl is also responsible for continued awareness of SIRT’s initiatives and activities across the Sheridan community. Cheryl has over ten years of marketing and communications experience in the educational publishing (University of Toronto Press), media (Toronto Star), and arts (AGO) sectors with a focus on sales and marketing strategies while creating and maintaining brand standards. She has worked on comprehensive multi-channel marketing programs inclusive of events, social media, traditional advertising, digital advertising, and publicity.
Software DeveloperRead More
Khalil Shazam is a graduate of the Sheridan College Software Development Network Engineering program.
He has experience in areas including web development, game development, and 3D design.
In addition, he has worked on multiple VR projects in both Unity and Unreal game engines.
Junior Finance CoordinatorRead More
Gissal is the Junior Finance Coordinator at SIRT. Her innovative drive had led her to Sheridan College where she graduated with Bachelor in Business Administration, majoring in Finance, as well as the undergraduate certificate in creativity and creative problem solving. She takes care of financial reporting, planning, and analyzing financial data here at SIRT. Gissal works closely with SIRT’s Director and Operations team to continue improving development of SIRT’s financial management platform.
Software Engineering ResearcherRead More
Parker holds a Honours Bachelor of Physical Science from the University of Guelph and a Systems Analyst Advanced Diploma from Sheridan College. He has experience working with Unreal & Unity engines, as well as assisting in machine learning research projects. Parker frequently collaborates with the Virtual Production team to improve tools and overall workflow. His passion for learning keeps him up to date with the newest advancements in media technologies.
Research Finance AdministratorRead More
Aruba Siddiqui is the Research Finance Administrator at SIRT. Providing support to the Sheridan Research Office team, working closely with faculties, departments, and research and incubation centres to support post-award administration of research projects. Overlooking all aspects of a research grant’s life cycle from set-up through to closeout and audit. Also providing support for budget functions within the research and incubation centres. She has experience working for the Town of Milton, Oakville, City of Burlington, and Region of Halton. She holds an Honours in Business Commerce and Business Administration Accounting Degree, as well as a Co-op Business Studies Accounting Diploma from Sheridan College.
Research Project CoordinatorRead More
Cindy is an experienced Research Project Coordinator with a demonstrated history of working in the screen industry, this includes programming, animation, and production pipelines. She is skilled in Resource Management, Project Tracking, and Financials. She graduated from University of Toronto with a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and Information Technology and then completed a Post Graduate Degree in Project Management at Sheridan College. With three years of project management experience, Cindy works closely with the Manager, SIRT Projects to develop new research project strategies that enhances project delivery.