Seeking to open doors for graduates in the growing field of electronic sports, Thomas College will launch a new academic major in fall of 2022 called esports and gaming administration. Esports is a form of professional competition using video games and growing in popularity among spectators.
The undergraduate program, which has a three year-option, will include courses from an Introduction to esports management to esports convention, event and trade show planning.
The Waterville school has had an esports team since January 2019, and broke ground earlier this summer on a state-of-the-art athletics facility that will be used in part for esports competitions; that complex is due to open in August 2022.
“Esports is a billion-dollar industry so creating a degree program that melds a solid business foundation with a focus on this exploding field is a perfect fit for our students,” said Thomas College Provost Thomas Edwards in a news release.
Donald Cragen, chair and professor of business at Thomas College’s H. Allen Ryan School of Business who will be one of three esports faculty members, told Mainebiz that esports is expected to reach an estimated $3 billion by 2022 after surpassing $1 billion in 2019.
“The field, still in its infancy, continues to expand and open new areas and with the U.S. Supreme Court decision affecting the NCAA, we will see a tremendous growth in the collegiate ranks and sponsorships to individual student athletes which will grow the sport,” he said. “This will bring about greater interest in degrees in this growing field.”