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University of New Haven announces academic program on the business of esports

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 01: A general view of play during Rainbow 6 Seige: Six Masters 2019 during the Melbourne Esports Open at Margaret Court Arena on September 01, 2019 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Kelly Defina/Getty Images)

NEW HAVEN — The University of New Haven announced Wednesday that they will be implementing an academic curriculum in esports management. The school says it’s the first of its kind to be part of a business curriculum accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB).

The introduction of the University’s esports curriculum will begin with the launch of a concentration in esports management, part of the University’s bachelor’s degree in business management.

The new concentration will begin enrolling students for the fall semester of 2020.

The University of New Haven also says that in addition, they will be creating an interdisciplinary undergraduate program in esports and a companion master’s program in esports and technology.

A 2,500 square-foot esports training and competition center is a centerpiece of the University’s $35 million Bergami Center for Science, Technology, and Innovation, scheduled to open in the spring of 2020.

The planned esports competition and training center will host esports competitions that enable students to gain hands-on technical and operational experience. The space will also engage students through the University’s esports club, which has more than 200 members.

In addition to creating an esports curriculum that includes courses in entrepreneurship and the business of esports, the University will look to develop interdisciplinary classes focusing on gambling in esports

“The esports industry is one of the fastest-growing in the world,” said University of New Haven President Steven Kaplan, “Developing these in-demand, unique academic opportunities at both the undergraduate and graduate levels will enable the University to maximize the interdisciplinary strengths of our programs in business, technology, engineering, and computer science, creating a pioneering opportunity for our students that will prepare them to be the future leaders of the esports industry.”

“Our rigorous business curriculum has a proven track record of preparing successful corporate leaders and entrepreneurs,” said Brian Kench, Ph.D., dean of the College of Business. “The creation of an academic program in esports management capitalizes on these strengths and sends a clear message that the University of New Haven is committed to being at the forefront of preparing students to be leaders on the business side of this emerging industry.”

“The time is right for the University to take the lead in esports education,” said Gil Fried, J.D., professor and coordinator of the University’s highly regarded sport management bachelor’s and master’s degree programs. Professor Fried is currently writing what is expected to be the field’s most comprehensive esports textbook with more than 60 co-authors from across the globe, including conference commissioners, general managers of professional esports teams, and several professional gamers.

“There will be many opportunities for students with a broad range of skills and experiences to pursue lucrative careers in this high-growth field,” continued Fried. “From the management and business side to technology, game development, broadcasting, and media rights to actually competing professionally, students will be able to pursue their passions.”

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