University of California, Irvine: Top "Overwatch" Players Can Earn Scholarships

Are you worried that your midnight video game habit is destroying your academic and social life? If so, don’t worry too much. What if someone told you that you could earn scholarship money by playing video games? All those days and nights of hand-eye coordination and reading about tactics and ways to earn more points and kills in a certain game will pay off. However, only a handful of gamers can receive this scholarship opportunity, but with some luck, you could be the next one.
Since its release in 2016, several gamers around the globe have been attached to Overwatch‘s aesthetics, cutting-edge graphics, and interesting gameplay. Initially, some thought that the game only connected people socially through the web and honed their hand-eye coordination, but the University of California, Irvine proved the doubters wrong when they recently announced their plan to recruit elite e-sports players for scholarships.
In the fall of 2017, UC Irvine will release its information and spots for the Overwatch scholarship. The school is one of the first schools to announce its scholarship opportunities for something related to gaming and competition. It started its e-sports scholarship with League of Legends, which went into effect last year.
Scholarship nominees will be paid $2,500 toward their tuition per year. In return, they will be required to practice for 15-20 hours a week and attend team meetings, community service, workouts, and competitions over the course of the competitive season.
There are also perks included with each e-sport student’s commitment. They will be granted unlimited usage to UCI’s e-sports arena. In addition, there will be a host of professional coaches, trainers, and a team psychologist who will provide undivided attention to each player. “We are very excited to take this next step in growing our scholarship program for top gamers who are also strong students and great members of our community,” Mark Deppe, the acting director of e-sports at UCI, said. “We look forward to connecting the excitement generated by our competitive teams to advance efforts along our other pillars: Academics, community, and entertainment.”
This scholarship offer is enticing but it’s also competitive. Last year, UCI’s e-sports program was a huge success, winning major accolades. Its gaming club’s Overwatch team won the Tespa Summer Series in 2016 and they also went undefeated in the Tespa Collegiate Series later that year.
UCI’s new program hopes to include a wide audience and game enthusiasts alike. Not only that, there are hopes that the game’s diverse players will help the school achieve its goal of making e-sports more inclusive and accessible to underrepresented groups.

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