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There has been a trend recently of esports teams being created at high schools nationwide. Multiple high schools in the Kalamazoo and Portage school districts are adopting this new activity. While all these public schools in the area have created teams, Hackett is still yet to start one. 

Hackett’s math teacher, Mrs. Van Pelt, would like to start and lead the club if there was a significant interest in esports. Mrs. Van Pelt has connections with previous conferences on what to play, and how to operate and compete an esports team. However, for anything to start, it would have to come from within the student body.

Once started, the esports program would remain a club for at least 5 years before it can become a team sport. Once those five years have passed, the esports program can become an official varsity sport and receive the benefits of it, such as a varsity letter.

Esports are not only becoming popular at the high school level but at the collegiate level as well. The National Association of Collegiate Esports (NACE), works with Next College Student Athlete (NCSA) for varsity esports programs, scholarships, and the recruitment process all over the country.

In the NACE, there are over 204 academic institutions that offer esports scholarships. Though over 200 schools are participating in varsity esports programs, not all offer esports scholarships. Some examples of schools that offer scholarships are Alma College, Boise State University, University of California-Irvine, Michigan State University, and more.  

Esports includes many games. Most of these games are played competitively for money and can involve the recruitment of certain players. Some examples include League of Legends (LoL), World of Warcraft (WoW), CounterStrike: GlobalOffensive (CS: GO), Fortnite, Valorant, Overwatch, Super Smash Brothers, Rocket League, and many more. 

For anyone interested in starting or joining an esports program at Hackett, reach out to Mrs. Van Pelt or Mr. Kosmerick. They will help you with the next steps and begin the initiation for the formation of the club.

Written by: Nick Doerr and Gabe Oeurn


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