Tom Hershey has been promoted to senior vice president of operations at Sony Pictures Imageworks, the visual effects and animation division of Sony Pictures Entertainment. Hershey's expanded role will now include leadership of console game development at Imageworks. Hershey recently forged a deal with the Institute of Creative Technologies (ICT), a joint venture between the Army branch of the U.S. Military and the University of Southern California (USC). Together with Pandemic Studios, Imageworks is collaborating with ICT to create simulation training programs via immersive technologies. In addition to advancing game production capabilities at Imageworks, Hershey continues to have departmental oversight of the company's operations, art department, interactive compositing, production services technicians, training and editorial. Of the synergies between Imageworks' production pipeline and business model for visual effects and game development, Hershey observed, "As game console hardware becomes increasingly sophisticated, the complexity and realism of the CG characters and imagery in games has grown substantially. As a result, the gap that historically existed between game animation and effects work for film and television has narrowed considerably, making the sharing of talents and techniques from one medium to the other beneficial to both industries." Hershey joined Imageworks in 1995 as VP of operations and has been instrumental in the facility's growth. Imageworks has grown from 75 employees in 1995 to its current roster of over 500 employees.