Posted 6th October 2017 By: Noreen - Tipify Staff
The National Association of Collegiate Esports aims to promote esports across college campuses nationwide. It has currently succeeded to include 42 schools and accounts for almost the entire country’s varsity esports programs. It is an association founded by seven schools in 2016 to make a forum that allows college esports programs to compete against one another. Robert Morris became the first university to offer a scholarship for video gaming. It was followed by the University of California two years later, becoming the first public school to provide such scholarship. And since then, more universities have followed suit. A LimeLight Networks study discovered that Americans aged 18 to 25 watch esports more than any other sports combined. This study just proves how relevant it is to have college esports programs in universities.
According to Chris Sims of the Indianapolis Star, Indiana Institute of Technology will only be offering 12 scholarships during its first year. A scholarship amounting to $5,000 will be given to varsity players, while a scholarship amounting to $2,500 will be given to junior varsity players. Meanwhile, at Maryville University, $2,000 worth of scholarship will be provided to each player. According to the website of Robert Morris University, they are offering up to $19,000, with half of it dedicated to cover room and board, and the other half of it dedicated to cover tuition. Alex Filutze, the first to receive an esports scholarship at Kansas Wesleyan University, receives $20,000 a year. It is by far, the biggest scholarship amount offered by any school.
Joining tournaments could also earn players big prize money. One of which is the University League of Legends tournament, which had over 300 schools participating in its fourth year. Runner-ups from Robert Morris took home $15,000 each, while the champions from University of British Columbia won $30,000 each.
The Indiana Institute of Technology makes use of an online recruitment form. Students who answer the online form will be interviewed through a phone call. Maryville, on the other hand, does not have a recruitment program. Daniel Clerke, the university’s director of esports, is the one who chose the team’s current roster. He is known for having a keen eye for talent. Missouri Baptist University utilizes a word-of-mouth system in finding new players.
The programs will not be limited to League of Legends. Other games like Hearthstone, Overwatch, and Starcraft 2 will also be included to the programs. Clerke proposed the idea of including a variety of other video games like Call of Duty and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive to the Maryville’s president, Mark Lombardi. In no time, eSports games like CS:GO will also be an in demand game for the association’s college tournaments. The scholarship programs will absolutely be of big favor to experienced CS:GO players who are not able to go to college. With such scholarships, the esports community will surely grow more. It is now the era for virtual gaming. Gone are the days it was considered a taboo in most schools. The rising popularity of this trend even inspired schools to include it in their programs. What are you waiting for? Apply for a scholarship now.
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