In a groundbreaking move, Staffordshire University, located in Stoke-on-Trent, England, has announced a £2.9 million investment in esports. This ambitious initiative is set to place the institution at the forefront of the esports academic and competitive landscape.
A New Esports Hub on Campus
The university is gearing up to build a state-of-the-art esports headquarters on its campus. This esports hub will feature an esports arena designed for both competitions and practice sessions. In addition to the arena, the hub will also house a production studio dedicated to esports, outfitted with broadcasting galleries.
Pioneers in Esports Education
Staffordshire University has been a trailblazer in integrating esports into its academic curriculum. Five years ago, it became the first UK university to introduce a degree focused on esports. Since its inception, the university has forged strong partnerships with industry stalwarts such as Fourth Wall Esports and TeamSpeak to refine its esports offerings.
Collaboration at its Core
One of the most noteworthy aspects of this initiative is the partnerships Staffordshire University has entered into. EVS and Panasonic are on board to outfit the facility with top-notch equipment. Furthermore, Digital Garage, a renowned broadcasting solutions firm, will take the reins in designing, constructing, and setting up this innovative space.
Adding a touch of creativity, the esports hub will showcase electronic sports-inspired artworks crafted by students. It’s also expected to be equipped with around 80 gaming and esports devices.
“We are thrilled to expand our Esports footprint in Stoke-on-Trent. This will grant students increased access to our facilities, immersing them in cutting-edge technology and enabling more hands-on work and extracurricular activities. We are eager for our students to experience the transformed spaces at Beacon.” – Raheel Nawaz, Professor and Vice Chancellor of Digital Transformation at Staffordshire University.
Reimagining the Esports Curriculum
In tandem with the infrastructure investment, Staffordshire University has also revamped its esports course, crafted in collaboration with both students and industry professionals. This three-year Bachelor of Arts in Esports endeavors to meld the production side of esports with hands-on experience in business, marketing, event management, and theory-based studies.
“We’ve deeply considered what our graduates need to excel in the future. Thanks to our revised curriculum, our students can delve into the theoretical and practical approaches to production, media, events, communities, and management.” – Dr. Ying Ying Law, Director of the Esports Course.
The world of esports is rapidly evolving, and educational institutions have a pivotal role to play. Staffordshire University’s foresight and substantial investment underscore the significance of esports in today’s digital age. By fostering an environment where theory meets practice, Staffordshire ensures its students are well-equipped to navigate and thrive in the dynamic esports landscape.