In a groundbreaking move, Stockton University is set to launch the first-ever undergraduate degree in esports in New Jersey. Starting from the fall of 2023, this program will position Stockton as a trailblazer among public institutions in the state, offering students a unique opportunity to pursue a Bachelor of Science in Esports Management through the esteemed School of Business. With a comprehensive curriculum that encompasses business fundamentals, practical work experience, mandatory internships, and educational work opportunities, this program is tailored for individuals seeking a successful career in the rapidly evolving esports industry.
According to Warren Kleinsmith, the dean of the School of Business, Stockton University has continuously expanded its offerings in fields such as hospitality, tourism, event management, and business studies, aligning with the university’s commitment to provide relevant and timely programs. Kleinsmith emphasized the significance of this esports degree, stating, “This is one example of existing talent in our Hospitality, Tourism and Event Management programming seeing synergies between industries and building the necessary networks and curriculum to offer a highly competitive and academically rigorous degree.”
The Esports Management degree will feature specialized courses specifically tailored to the esports field, including “Esports and Events Industry” and “Esports Event Production.” These courses will equip students with the essential skills required for diverse careers within the esports realm, ranging from event production and digital media to event marketing and project management. Kleinsmith also highlighted that graduates of this program will have accumulated over 300 hours of practical experience, providing them with a competitive edge in the industry.
Stockton University has already gained recognition within the esports community through the outstanding achievements of its Rocket League team. The team secured second place in the Collegiate World Championship last year and is gearing up to compete again this year from June 2 to 4. However, the esports program at Stockton goes beyond mere gaming. Noel Criscione-Naylor, the interim esports program chair, affirms that the Bachelor of Science in Esports Management aims to cultivate transferable skills essential for nurturing talent within the esports ecosystem.
Criscione-Naylor expressed, “Our Bachelor of Science in Esports Management builds the transferable skills necessary to fill the esports ecosystem talent pipeline.” Moreover, students enrolled in this program will have access to a thriving community at Stockton that provides extensive support. They will have the opportunity to gain hands-on experience within the university’s esports student community, collaborate with local professional esports organizations, and forge connections with business partners, including the Atlantic City Esports Innovation Center situated in Stockton’s residential complex. Criscione-Naylor emphasized the unity within this community, stating, “We have designed courses where students consistently engage with the esports student community from mixer events, competitions, and recruiting activities. We are one community.”
One of the significant advantages of this new esports degree program lies in its integration with Stockton University’s well-established Hospitality, Tourism, and Event Management program. Criscione-Naylor believes that esports has the potential to revolutionize the local tourism industry and stimulate local economies by attracting businesses. Despite existing predominantly within the digital realm, esports demonstrates a desire from both institutions and gamers themselves to connect these practices to physical spaces traditionally associated with hospitality, such as hotels, food and beverage establishments, events, and tourism.
In an effort to establish strong ties with the esports industry, Criscione-Naylor has proactively forged relationships with esports professional associations, including the Esports Trade Association and the National Esports Association. Additionally, Stockton has developed dual-credit agreements with high schools in New Jersey and articulation agreements with community colleges, aiming to enhance students’ academic interests in esports and provide greater access to resources across various stakeholder groups.
For more information on the Bachelor of Science in Esports Management degree, visit stockton.edu/business/esports-management.html or reach out to Noel Criscione-Naylor directly at [email protected]. Applications for the fall semester are still being accepted, so seize this opportunity to be part of the inaugural class.
The launch of the undergraduate esports degree at Stockton University not only signifies a remarkable milestone for the institution but also heralds a new era of possibilities for aspiring esports professionals. By offering a comprehensive program that combines academic rigor with practical experience, Stockton is paving the way for students to excel in the dynamic and competitive world of esports.
So, if you’ve ever dreamed of turning your passion for gaming into a viable and rewarding career, look no further than Stockton University’s Bachelor of Science in Esports Management. Embark on an educational journey that will equip you with the skills, knowledge, and connections necessary to thrive in this rapidly expanding industry. Don’t miss out on this opportunity to be at the forefront of the esports revolution. Apply now and be part of a community that’s shaping the future of gaming.