BC Welcomes Guests from Helsinki for Tech Education Collaboration

two men standing in front of XR technology

Tuesday, July 9, 2024

By Deanna Rea

Bakersfield College recently welcomed Jussi Salonen and Damon Hernandez, who were visiting from the Helsinki XR Center in Helsinki, Finland. They traveled halfway around the world to share their expertise and explore potential collaborations with Bakersfield College.

The Helsinki XR Center (HXRC) has become the leading organization in Extended Realities since its establishment in early 2019. XR, referring to Extended Reality or immersive technologies, is an umbrella term for technologies that create, augment, and merge digital elements with physical space, such as virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), and mixed reality (MR) technologies. The HXRC welcomes all prospective XR artists and enthusiasts of the field to experience enrichment through successful collaborations, mentoring, and organized services and events.

Jussi Salonen, the Network Coordinator and Support for Start-Ups & Visitors at HXRC, brings a unique blend of expertise to the collaboration between Bakersfield College and the Helsinki XR Center. His workshops and materials, brought to our campus with the help of his team of experts, will potentially provide a unique opportunity for our community to explore new technologies.

Damon Hernandez will also be assisting with the potential collaboration by providing a wide variety of web-based resources. Hernandez has worked closely with various industries in the areas of web-based 3D, virtual environments, mirror worlds, and other metaverse-related technologies for over twenty years. He has worked extensively with XR industries as a designer, developer, advisor, speaker, entrepreneur, and executive. He is passionate about his involvement in the web’s convergence with other technologies including 3D, IoT, GIS, CAD/BIM/CAM, AR/VR, and mobile. He has also organized workshops to educate environmental companies and the local community about the implementation and use of innovative technologies.