The world of esports is rapidly growing, and colleges and universities are doing all they can to not be left behind. The competitive play of video games has permeated athletic departments, scholarship awards, recruitment tactics, retention efforts, and more. College administrators have long known that prospective students are looking to pair their education with their passions, and in order to attract more students, video games must be factored into their equation.
So how do colleges and universities involve esports on their campuses? There are four ways that colleges can embrace esports and empower their students to participate, depending on their skill level, interest, and the amount of time they are willing to commit outside of the classroom.
- For students that are interested in esports related majors and minors such as esports management or esports business specialization at colleges that offer esport degree programs.
- For students that are recruited by the college to play esports professionally at other competitions as a school representative.
- For students that are interested in having a small club made up of other gamers to get together and learn about new video games.
- For students that are interested in friendly competition, to play in tournaments or leagues for fun! Typically through the college’s intramural or student life departments.
Similar to traditional sports, those that are on a college’s varsity esports team usually receive scholarships and are expected to practice for many hours a day to perfect their craft. Typically these teams are made up of less than ten players, but there are definitely more than ten students on a college campus that are interested in playing video games for competition. This is where Mission Control comes in--similar to club or intramural leagues for traditional sports, there is a large population of students looking to play video games together. By providing programming for these students, colleges are helping to create connections, build friendships, and enhance the college experience. Tap into this interest by utilizing esports programming for alumni functions, student activity events, homecoming gatherings, welcome weekends, parents weekends, spirit weeks, admission events, and more!