The growth of the University of New Haven’s esports program

The growth of the University of New Haven’s esports program

Photo Courtesy of Kayla Mutchler

Cameron Hailey, Staff Writer

University officials made a decision to invest in a new academic major at the Pompea College of Business, esports management, and esports and gaming. With the high-quality equipment in the new “Stable” training arena located in the Bergami Center for Science, Technology, and Innovation, the growth of the esports club, competitive varsity team, and academic programs has started.

Jason Chung, executive director of esports at the university said, “Esports is a relatively young industry, and what they are finding they need more of, is people on the business aspect of the industry.”

The program is focused heavily on the business behind the scenes in esports, focusing on courses on video games and management. For Chung, it was the reason he came to the University of New Haven.

The university program recently announced an academic partnership with the streaming app, Twitch. This deal was made to allow students an inside view of the industry from a leading business in gaming entertainment. This was the second major sponsorship of the university’s program, the other being HyperX, a gaming peripherals company.

“The Twitch partnership is validation, we are trying to build a much more rigorous program, we want students to have a deep understanding of the industry,” said Chung.

The esports industry has grown by millions of dollars in revenue over the past decade, and in 2019 surpassed the $1 billion mark. To Chung, this is important news and he believes that the program prepares students for all aspects of the industry. Chung says that he wants to give each student a leg up while entering the industry in the area they are interested in, whether varsity or business.

“We want to produce generalists who can think like great specialists. We are trying to build long-lasting partnerships in the industry for the students to be able to take advantage of,” said Chung.

A master’s program in esports is also in development at the university. While there is little information about this program, the university released a form that students can submit if they are interested in enrolling when the program launches.