University of California, Irvine has announced a League of Legends scholarship. The university is one of the first of its kind to do so.
Many private schools have started scholarships based on video games, and even more have students run clubs and events to support their passion. However, a major university announcing a scholarship for League of Legends is huge milestone for gaming.
The scholarship program for League of Legends will begin in Fall 2016. Riot Games is also playing a role by supporting a PC cafe on-campus. This cafe will use a theme similar to Korean PC cafes and is promising a premium League of Legends experience.
We look at regions like Korea where, since launch, PC cafes have been essential to Korean players,” said Michael Sherman, Riot’s collegiate program manager. “They expect a premium game experience when they go play in those PC cafes. We’re trying something out similar to that on college campuses. We want to give people a reason to be excited to come play at a PC cafe to support their school and team.
University of California, Irvine has named Mark Deppe as its first eSports Director. He said in a statement:
We think esports is growing quickly. We expect other schools to follow our lead. UCI is excited to be a leader. We don’t think we’re going to be the last school to do this. We think we’re going to be one of the schools that really encourages particularly public schools and shows them that this is really a viable thing. There’s lots of interest in this, and it can improve your school and improve interest in your school.
Deppe made it clear that it is now about League of Legends or eSports, they want to make sure that University of California is the most gamer friendly institute around.