Benedict College becomes the first HBCU to offer an undergraduate esports degree

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Benedict College made history as the first historically black college and university to offer an undergraduate degree in the growing esports industry.

Earlier this month, the school expanded its investment in esports by announcing a new degree program aimed at preparing students for careers in the virtual realm.

“In line with Benedict’s strategic plan to deliver transformational learning experiences, our innovative esports administration program is designed to prepare students to create new applications and engage in all facets of the industry. “, said Janeen Witty, Vice President of Academic Affairs at Benedict College. , Told WIS News 10.

The Columbia, SC-based school is already the first HBCU to host an Esports competition in addition to being the first HBCU with an esports arcade. Now, with its undergraduate program, Benedict College will offer minors and certifications in partnership with Blaze Fire Games.

The Blaze Fire partnership also helped the school start its esports club for the Madden and NCAA College Football tournaments.

“We are leading the way,” said Dr. Roslyn Clark Artis, president of Benedict College.

Benedict is following in the footsteps of Syracuse University, which also has an eSports team, and Northwood and Ohio State University, which have also launched eSports degree programs.

“It’s a billion dollar industry, it’s growing every year, and there are more opportunities, especially for African Americans and people of color in esports,” Dr. Paula said. Shelby, head of Health, Physical Education and Recreation at Benedict College. Told WACH Fox 57 News.

Matthew Drapeau started as an esports professor at Benedict College last fall and has helped students launch careers in esports marketing, broadcasting and program development.

“You learn emotional control, problem-solving skills, as you invent things, build things, and critical thinking skills, you can learn cybersecurity skills,” Drapeau said.

“We are here to change things. We are here to put black faces on every color of the scale in esports,” said Kylah Montgomery, a double art major at Benedict College.

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