Dear Hardcore Gamer,
It is with great pleasure that I inform you that you’ve been selected to receive an Excellent Support Class Scholarship from Robert Morris University Illinois. Each year, students who have exemplary hand eye coordination, academic prowess, and a knack for teamwork are chosen from the entering class to receive this honor.
The Excellent Support Class Scholarship can be combined with other University tuition awards not to exceed the tuition total for each year. Students who receive full tuition funding from sources other than the Excellent Support Class Scholarship will be considered Excellent Gamers without additional funding.
Please note that students receiving this scholarship must attend the University full time and maintain Assist-to-Death ratio of 3.0 (adr to be calculated at the end of each semester) in order to continue receiving said scholarship. Transfer student have two semesters to achieve the 3.0 ratio.
Please accept my sincere congratulations on your selection for this great honor. We genuinely look forward to your joining Robert Morris University Illinois.
Charles E. Singletary
The letter above is pure fiction, but today we come one step closer to this being a reality. Via DailyDot, you can now receive a scholarship for playing League of Legends. Not simply adding this as it’s own division with special credits, LoL has been added to the athletic division.
If you’re not familiar, LoL is a MOBA title in which you have 3v3 or 5v5 champions battle upon a map while managing NPC minions and defending towers. LoL is free to play and has garnered a humongous player base over the last couple of years on the strengths of its fun gameplay, consistent new content, and constant, game balancing updates. Granted, the Collegiate Star League in which students will be competing against 103 other schools is not a new entity, but the scholarship now being offered is a big step for the sport and the gaming industry in general.
Over the last few years, video games have grown dramatically as a legitimate sport, but having tuition paid for in recognition of individual talents is a step forward in digital athlete legitimacy. Growing up, being paid to play video games was a farfetched idea let alone going to school for it. I must say I’m truly jealous of the opportunity being offered to fresh faces just coming out of high school. Imagine them being lectured on time management and responsibility, ready to scale down their gaming time only to realize it may be their ticket through college.
Envision a competitive gaming industry that mirrors the current collegiate atmosphere: Blue chip recruits, media heavy Signing Day, Bowl Championships, and even a Major League Gaming draft. These things are certainly just ideas for now, but the potential is infinite as long as the gaming industry continues to grow. For now we must wonder, will this University be ridiculed for its investment in gamers? Or is there a more widely accepted and involved digital athletics future on the horizon? Share your thoughts down in the comment section!