The Esports industry have become competitive enough to earn a degree spot in several universities in the US and UK.
Instead of going to college to play traditional sports, gaming students can now enter college to pursue their passion – esports.
The University of Staffordshire is an example of a number of UK and US colleges launching applications aimed toward capitalizing on the booming business’ want for expert professionals.
The university launched their first Bachelor’s and grasp’s esports applications last year. The course would develop and teach college students advertising and administration specifically designed for the industry.
This autumn, the university is expanding their program to London while other schools are also debuting esports degree courses, including Britain’s Chichester University. In Asia, where esports has seen strong growth, schools in Singapore and China offer courses.
In the US, more than 100 highschools have launched esports programs alongside their traditional soccer and football teams. And some colleges like the University of California Irvive, Robert Morris University, and UC Berkeley, are offering scholarships to esports players to pursue their passion into a future career.
Ryan Chapman, 18, mentioned his mother and father had been “skeptical at first” about learning esports, or aggressive multiplayer video gaming.
“But now they understand how big the industry is growing, the pace it’s growing at. They’re now really all for it because it’s a great industry to start to get into.”
Esports tournaments have now turned into a cultural phenomenon. Massive competitions are held in arenas, where hundreds of followers watch big-name skilled video players compete for profitable prize swimming pools.
Joni Finney, director of the College of Pennsylvania’s Institute for Analysis on Increased Schooling, says that some levels are “too specialised” for the altering economic system.
“It’s really up to the faculty of those institutions to step up and say, ‘You know, a degree in business will cover these kinds of jobs,’ rather than saying we have a degree in a certain job category.”
However, these colleges contradict that students are not simply taught to enjoy playing video games. Students would mainly learn marketing and management skills that would allow them to host esports tournaments and events.
Chichester University hired former pro gamer Rams Singh, known as R2K, as a senior lecturer for its program, which includes playing games such as FIFA and League of Legends as part of the course.
Ellis Celia, current student of the Staffordshire course, said:
“The industry can only go up at this point”.