Video games are going varsity, and Ohio State University sees that as a chance to embrace “e-sport” athletes.
Ohio State will begin offering scholarships to "exemplary e-sports athletes."
"Other large universities are expected to follow suit as competition ramps up," Ohio State spokesperson Molly Devaney wrote in an email.
School officials say they are dedicated to developing the most comprehensive e-sports program to date.
“With Ohio State being a leader in engineering, academics, research and medicine, it seems a natural fit to pull all of these together to support the esports program,” said co-director of game studies and e-sports curriculum development Deborah M. Grzybowski.
New undergraduate majors in game studies and e-sports will offer classes across five colleges in disciplines such as coaching, business management, marketing and game development.
School officials said a state-of-the-art arena is being built for collegiate competitions. The arena will have more than 80 seats with computer, console and virtual reality systems. It will also have a broadcast booth for students interested in shoutcasting (narrating the gaming action).
Ohio State school officials said the e-sports program will give students as many opportunities as possible to be part of the booming industry.
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