eSports has recently been gaining more recognition as a legitimate sport, and US colleges are not being left behind. Robert Morris University in Illinois, USA has begun offering a scholarship programme for those who excel at League of Legends. The idea is that RMU is preparing to assemble a varsity team to compete in the Collegiate Star League; an eSport tournament that includes the likes of LoL, Dota 2 and Hearthstone.
The Collegiate Star League is mostly attended by clubs and associations from universities and colleges across America. Even the more reputable institutions such as Arizona State University and Harvard send teams to compete every year. However, these teams do not receive the support from their college administration beyond the regular club support. RMU is changing that by putting their LoL team on the same footing as the athletics programmes.
Qualified gamers will be able to earn scholarships of 50% off their tuition fees, as well as another 50% off the fees for room and board. The college is attempting to assemble three teams of nine players, with a first pick team and two backup teams.
Associate Athletic Director Kurt Melcher states, “Robert Morris University has always been at the forefront of providing opportunities for a diverse student population with different interests and skills. League of Legends is a competitive, challenging game which requires significant amount of teamwork to be successful.”