E-sports roundup: Riot and UC Berkeley, Hi-Rez’s varsity league, UK collegiate e-sports, cash for Averett e-sports
Still don’t think we should take e-sports seriously? Doesn’t even matter because it’s happening anyway. To wit:
Riot Games has partnered with UC Berkeley to boost esports in the California university system and launch an intramural e-sports league for League of Legends this fall. There are new scholarships for e-sports “student-athletes” too.
“The recently announced UC Berkeley esports community center will open in the campus’s Foothill complex in fall 2018. The University’s unique esports approach will provide support for educational and professional development programs for esports athletes and incorporates multiple aspects of the student experience, focusing on five overarching pillars: community, competition, social responsibility, wellness, and lifelong learning. Centering on inclusivity and community, a new Women in Gaming initiative will be headed by two female leaders among Cal’s student gamers.”
Hi-Rez is getting in on the college scene, launching a competition League late this summer.
The National Association of Collegiate Esports and Hi-Rez Studios announced Monday that NACE and Hi-Rez will partner to create varsity esports leagues in Smite and Paladins. The league is scheduled to launch in August. "We've seen increased campus… https://t.co/G1Co0F0SKs
— Sean Morrison (@sean_morrison) May 2, 2018
In other e-sports news, the UK now has an official university e-sports body. Dubbed National Student Esports, it’s backed by national governing body British Universities & Colleges Sport (BUCS) and “aims to raise the profile of university esports and create the best university esports experience worldwide” and “bring the higher education sector and the esports industry together to recognise the exceptional talent of student leaders in the esports and gaming space.”
And finally, Averett University in Danville, Virginia, announced this week that it has received a $100,000 donation from a pair of esteemed doctors to expand its relatively new (but not exactly small) e-sports programs. It already boasts a varsity competitive gaming program with 11 teams.