How eSports has become a career choice

How eSports has become a career choice

Tuesday, April 5, 2016 Totally Gaming
Applications flood in for eSports scholarships

Atlanta-based video game retailer KontrolFreek will next month award 10 students merit-based scholarships based on their academic achievements and participation in eSports.

After just over a week, nearly 100 students have registered to apply for the scholarship. The company will make a decision on the successful applicants after May 15, but a total of $20,000 (€17,600) is available to distribute amongst those who secure a place on the innovative scheme.

The first-of-its-kind scholarship, which will be administered by Scholarship Management Services, is open to students in the US and Canada.

Applicants must be able to prove that they are members of a collegiate eSports team and will be continuing their studies for another year. Like other scholarship programmes, other aspects such as grade point average, extracurricular activities, awards and honours will be taken into account.

Ashish Mistry, the president and CEO of KontrolFreek, said that the company wanted to give gamers a “leg up” into the potentially lucrative world of eSports.

“eSports is growing quickly, and some of the best and brightest are passionately pursuing it at a college level,” Mistry said. “When we looked at the financial aid options currently available for collegiate players, we saw a need for a broader, truly merit-based academic scholarship.”

According to market analysis company Newzoo, international brands are expected to spend $128m on sponsoring eSports events this year.

However, the growth of the sector is coming at a time of uncertainty, with long-awaited regulation likely in the coming years and fears from some quarters about the impact of compulsive gaming on the mental and physical health of youngsters.

This week, a report from the University of Utrecht in the Netherlands found that almost one in 10 boys aged 12 to 15 indicated signs of being addicted to gaming in the country.

The research, presented at a symposium organised by addiction clinic Trimbos Institute, showed that boys spend an average of 16 hours per week gaming, in comparison with 4.5 hours per week for girls. Those who show signs of addiction play at least 29 hours per week, according to researcher Regina van den Eijnden.

TotallyGaming.com says:

Is this the moment that eSports can finally become a recognised career path? For some of the world’s very top gamers, it already is, and there is little doubt that the sector is on an upward trajectory. However, those investing in eSports are anticipating a degree of turbulence as regulators look at the industry with increasing scrutiny. In the long term, regulation will stabilise eSports and provide a platform for growth, bringing to an end the wildly contrasting projections regarding the value of the industry.

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