Should we consider gaming scholarships as acceptable?

Should we consider gaming scholarships as acceptable?

It’s becoming more and more apparent that enrollment in colleges is shrinking and with that comes the solution of trying to “get with the new generation”; scholarships for gaming are an example of this.

These scholarships stem from a video gaming competition called Esports. The players compete in teams of all sorts of different genres of games. It’s set up exactly how you would picture a normal sports arena; all the players gathered in the middle with the audience surrounding them. You may notice it’s set up exactly like any athletic sports game.

Yet it is not considered a part of the NCAA. The NCAA only profits off of a player’s athletic ability, but even for an electronic sport, it’s still highly competitive which is why I think the College Board approved it. Yet this sparked an outraged cry of people from both athletics and academics.

One side thinks that the handing out of scholarships for gaming is unheard of. This side believes that gaming should be purely for entertainment and is inappropriate to be associated with education. On the opposite side, they believe that it is a great opportunity for kids to go to college and think that playing video games is hard work. For me, I can see why both sides feel each way.

When I first heard of gaming becoming worthy of scholarships, I was blinded by my anger because for me, I regularly participate in athletics. My view is fogged from a repetition of a seemingly never-ending practice, relentless pre-conditioning, and waking up every morning to extreme aches and pains. The thought of someone getting a scholarship for just getting comfy and pressing a few buttons irritated me. I felt that this wasn’t right until I opened my mind up a bit more.

If you think about it, this could actually benefit lots of groups. For one, kids could grow a drive and passion for gaming. Now that there are scholarships for gaming, kids might be motivated to do better in school. Speaking of school, making the big decision of pursuing education is hard and having an eagerness to continue it is just what kids need. I feel like it would encourage kids to understand that education is important.

Although this decision feels disrespectful to those who work hard academically and athletically, fostering a child’s passion and motivation for an interest of theirs is more important. We need to accept that times are changing, and with that, common interests will change too.

We can only be happy that we have more options and opportunities for people who don’t fit into the social standard.