Luckily, all those long nights of playing video games until 2 a.m. will eventually pay off. In fact, it is now worth more than just fun and games to be an enthusiastic gamer in this day and age. Most importantly, there are quite a few scholarships for gamers who are looking to pay for college! Moreover, the college sports arena, where students can win eSports scholarships and get paid to compete, has joined eSports.
Usually, these eSports scholarships are for professional players. Eligibility, like an athletic scholarship, will depend on how well you play a particular game and play in live tournaments. Basically, there are plenty of eSports scholarships and even more to come as popularity grows at the college level. Especially, if you are looking to play competitively at the college level and earn a college scholarship while doing so.
Without further ado, here is a complete list of scholarships for gaming enthusiasts.
List of Useful eSports Scholarships for Students
1. Evo College Scholarship for Gamers
The Evo College Scholarship for Gamers is offered annually for $10,000 in collaboration with the NYU Game Center. In particular, the scholarship is available for two promising high school seniors or college students who display great interest in pursuing a major and potential career in the video game industry.
Additionally, eligible applicants must be actively engaged in the community of the fighting game. Also, they must demonstrate legitimate financial need. Next, they have to show a strong interest in game design with a focus on competitive games, too.
2. High School StarLeague Scholarships
The High School StarLeague Scholarships provide more than $20,000 total for young gamers. Particularly, it is available for those competing in the annual League of Legends, Dota 2, and StarCraft 2 competition. In fact, TwitchTV, Newegg, Razer, Jinx, and other video game industry giants fund the scholarship to support bright individuals.
In order to be eligible for the prize money, North American high school students have to demonstrate an interest in entering the professional gaming scene. Besides, for ultimate character growth outside the game, they must be enrolling in a post-secondary degree program.
3. Penny Arcade Scholarship
For avid gamers with the intention of joining the video game industry in some capacity, the next eSports scholarship is free. Generally, the $10,000 Penny Arcade Scholarship is awarded each year. Furthermore, it aims to minimize tuition costs for full-time enrollment in an accredited college or university in the U.S.
To apply, applicants must already be enrolled in post-secondary education. Besides, they must have a major in a field related to gaming growth or design and have attained a minimum GPA of 3.3 or higher. Lastly, they also must have a clear potential to have a positive effect on the gaming future.
4. RMU League of Legends Scholarship Program
In fact, Robert Morris University is regarded as the first university to announce the inclusion of online sports to its athletic programs. Furthermore, it launched the League of Legends Scholarship Program for qualified gamers. Especially, it is available for those who succeed in playing the famous eSports game in the College Star League. Additionally, it will cover up to 50% of the tuition as well as 50% of room and board expenses.
At a value of $19,000 per academic year, the curriculum needs critical thinking from gamers. To compete in the virtual sporting environment, they will need to have team strategy abilities.
5. Scholarship for Gamers Honor Scholarship
The Scholarship for Gamers Honor Scholarship is offered to college-bound high school seniors with the highest academic credentials for $2,500 annually. In particular, it aims to support the most successful gaming enthusiasts to pursue higher education while competing in eSports or competitive gaming at the highest level.
Thus, applicants must rank in the top 25% of their graduating class. Additionally, they must have a minimum GPA of 3.3 and be enrolled in a rigorous program. Finally, they must be active in the gaming community on a regular basis and have high rankings in the game.
6. Twitch & Alienware Scholarship Program
The Twitch & Alienware Scholarship Program was developed to provide the most active and promising gamers who are pursuing post-secondary education in the U.S. Specifically, it will award five $10,000 scholarships annually to unlock career opportunities in the gaming industry. As a matter of fact, SteelSeries funds the program for bright individuals.
All in all, eligible candidates must have a 3.0 or higher overall GPA and high-in game rankings. Moreover, they must win top placements in the tournament and demonstrate a substantial interest in Twitch gaming.
7. University of California Irvine eSports Scholarships
Irvine eSports hires some of the best gamers worldwide and offers them scholarships to play for Eater Nation at the University of California. For that reason, UCI hopes that participation in eSports will allow students to participate in different facets of the world of gaming. In particular, it covers game creation, graphic design, marketing, video production, and etc.
8. Maryville University eSports Participation Award
A competitive, but friendly online gaming atmosphere is supported by the eSports Club at Maryville University. With the support of some of the best players in the world, players develop their skills and obtain assistance from Maryville employees in preparation for the professional leagues. Generally, a varsity team and JV teams are present in each game. Furthermore, the number of teams does not have a limit, but it needs 10-12 teams for each game. For a $2,000 gaming scholarship, eSports participants are eligible.
9. University of Utah League of Legends Scholarship
Primarily, the University of Utah is sponsoring an eSports varsity program of participants playing in the College League of Legends League. In regard to this, partial eSports scholarships will be available for all students who compete in the eSports varsity team. Generally, it aims to expand the program to the point that 35 students can receive full scholarships from the university.
10. Game Industry Scholarship for Women
As a matter of fact, female gamers are often under-represented in the industry. For that reason, Southern Methodist University – Guildhall (SMU) launched a scholarship program supporting women participating in game design programs. Basically, the Game Industry Scholarship for Women provides technology-oriented female college students with educational support. It is, actually, offered in conjunction with WomenGamers.com.
Specifically, applicants who show a passion for game design are eligible for the award. Also, by sending essays articulating the contributions they plan to bring to the gaming industry, they can improve their chances of winning. Students finding difficulty in composing a scholarship-winning essay should check our guide here. In short, the amount of scholarships increases up to the cumulative outstanding tuition balance owed. Of course, it is available once another financial assistance has been applied.
eSports Scholarships: How to Get Them
All in all, since eSports does not affiliate itself with the NCAA, it seems that academic eligibility is more lenient than conventional sports. Plus, although the criteria for scholarships differ from school to school, most varsity programs require gamers to maintain a 2.5 or higher GPA. Also, eSports scholarships are mostly partial and paired with scholarships from academia. Besides, good grades and test scores will also assist you in getting further assistance.
Thus, understanding what eSports coaches are searching for from college will make you stand out. Most importantly, you will put yourself in a good place to attract attention from college programs when you have good grades and a strong work ethic.