Benedict College Becomes First HBCU to Offer Esports Degree & Gaming Room

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This South Carolina HBCU is making history.

Benedict College is now the first HBCU in the nation to launch an esports gaming room and degree track dedicated to all things esports.

The esports industry is projected to surpass $1 billon dollars. Benedict College is ensuring their students have stake in esports with their new Esports Undergraduate Degree offering. According to Wach FOX 57, professor Matthew Drapeau is one of the Esports professors at the college that started teaching in the fall of 2021.“You’re learning emotional control, problem solving skills, as you come up with things, building things, and critical thinking skills, you can learn cybersecurity skills,” Drapeau said.

Dr. Paula Shelby, the head of Benedict College’s Health, Physical Education and Recreation Department, worked over two years to bring the Esports track to the curriculum.

“It is a billion-dollar industry, it’s growing every year, and there is more opportunities, especially for African Americans and people of color in esports,” said Shelby. “We have competitions at Benedict College, as well as out in the community, and then we always get invitations to compete at a national level.”