The rise of esports in the collegiate area has opened doors for students attending college, both for degree programs related to the video game industry and for students with a passion for esports. More universities have been offering scholarships for gamers and interested students in the past decade, and the esports industry is showing no sign of slowing down. The booming industry is projected to grow 400% to $4.28 billion by 2027 and massive gaming events like the Game Developers Conference have become more and more popular.
Scholarships are an excellent choice for the cost of college attendance, and with a scholarship for video games, you could use your favorite hobby to help pay for your degree. With over 2.7 billion gamers in the world, gaming and esports have transcended their traditional definition and have become a practical pipeline to educational opportunities
Fortunately, Bold.org has exclusive scholarships for students pursuing higher education. New scholarships are added every day, supplying opportunities to gamers and students passionate about esports. Whether you game or are interested in a career in graphic design, Bold.org has plenty of scholarships to choose from.
A scholarship for video games is awarded to students who play video games competitively and/or are interested in pursuing a degree in the video game industry. Such career paths could include game design or game development.
Some of these opportunities could go from offering $500 to offering full tuition. National organizations and associations like the Entertainment Software Association award scholarships annually and don't even require applicants to be members.
The Entertainment Software Association has awarded approximately 400 women and minority students the ESA Foundation Computer and Video Game Arts and Science scholarship, alongside other scholarship opportunities for students who belong to a collegiate esports team or identify as LGBTQ+ students or gamers.
Many colleges have followed suit and have created entire departments dedicated to fostering growth and careers in the gaming industry. The NYU Game Center, for example, is the heart of the Department of Game Design and holds an annual conference and multiple events to bring the game community together.
Noticing the rise of the gaming industry, schools are turning to scholarships to assist top talent and students with financial need to reach their goals.
Bold.org offers several esports scholarships and opportunities for students interested in the video game industry. Interested students can browse scholarships for gamers and boost their profiles to increase the odds of winning a scholarship.
Attaining a scholarship for gaming is possible! More and more universities are catching on to the rise of collegiate esports and want to support interested students with their goals.
Talented gamers and students passionate about gaming have scholarships available to them, as well as plenty of programs in video game design, interactive arts, and visual effects.
Whether you are currently attending a university and are looking for financial aid or are a prospective student curious about a career path in gaming, there are gaming scholarships that undergraduate and graduate students can apply for.
Applying for a gaming scholarship award is simple and fast. Once you've created a Bold.org profile, you can begin browsing the hundreds of available scholarships to find your perfect fit, whether you are looking for esports scholarships or other online games. You can even browse by category, education level, award amount, etc. to find scholarships that you qualify for.
Once you've found a scholarship, read through the instructions and requirements to make sure you qualify and understand what you need to do. Then, upload your application materials and click submit!
The first step to finding a scholarship for video gaming is to do a quick search on Google or an external scholarship platform. Bold.org categorizes scholarships based on interest, major, and education level, and users can find scholarships for gamers by entering a keyword or filtering by category.
In addition to their Bold.org profile, students may have to answer an essay prompt or series of questions for a scholarship application. Also, make sure to stay on top of deadlines as different scholarships will be available at different dates throughout the year.
If you are applying for a scholarship through a university or school esports team, you might have to show proof of player level or title. For example, the University of California - Irvine has Esports Scholarship teams that require students to have peaked at least Grandmaster (League of Legends) or 4500 SR (Overwatch).
Video gaming and esports scholarships come in different sizes and packages and are awarded to students who are not just interested in competitive games, but who are attending college full-time.
Most of these scholarships will ask applicants to demonstrate academic excellence and a passion for the industry. If that sounds like you, these scholarships are worth taking a look at.
The University of California - Irvine specifically recruits students to compete for "Eater Nation," and has different scholarships based on which teams you join. Scholarships for varsity teams are up to $6,000 and $3,000 for junior varsity teams. Eligible students are required to try out for UCI's League of Legends or Overwatch teams, and once accepted they have access to coaches, an exercise physiologist, a team psychologist, and more.
As previously mentioned, the NYU Game Center is another institution that will assist a student who is interested in pursuing a career in the gaming industry. In order to foster creativity and innovation in the field of online gaming, NYU partnered with EVO, the world's largest fighting game tournament and premier gaming venue to allow one student to study video game design at NYU's MFA program. The amount varies per year but is estimated to be between $20,000 and $30,000.
Below is a list of scholarships for gaming offered by Bold.org for students eager to fund their esports and gaming dreams with the best scholarships available to them.
This scholarship aims to support a high school senior who will be a first-generation college student. Honoring Leon M. Braswell III, the scholarship will allow a student who belongs to an underrepresented minority group the opportunity to buy books for their upcoming school year.
Applicants may apply by July 20, 2022, and must reside in Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, or Pennsylvania.
This scholarship aims to support a high school senior who will pursue an undergraduate degree. The $500 scholarship will assist a student who lives in West Virginia — a state which has the lowest rate of college-educated people in the U.S. Eligible applicants may apply by March 4, 2023.
This scholarship aims to support a student from any education level who is ready to take their passion for gaming to the next level and gain vital experience for success in esports. Any college students who attend William Peace University are eligible for this $1,000 scholarship that will benefit any content creator, streamer, or gamer who is ready to turn their hobby into a career.
Yes! There are universities and schools like Harrisburg University that annually award students with full-time scholarships and stipends. In 2018, Harrisburg University became the first college esports program to award full-ride scholarships to its entire roster. At Harrisburg, 22 esports players receive full-tuition scholarships and a housing stipend to attend their school.
The varsity team competes in League of Legends, Overwatch, and Hearthstone. Another school that realized the need for diversity and financial assistance to assist the new generation of gamers is NYU. The school's department partnered with an alum from its MFA program to create a full-tuition scholarship for female gamers, noting the need for women's voices in the industry.
Because esports have made it to the collegiate arena in the past few decades, esports players can earn scholarships just like traditional sports players can. These scholarships are renewed each academic year and can range from $5,000 to $8,000 a year. Players receive coaching and academic assistance while pursuing their education and competing as college athletes. Each university is different, so make sure to reach out to the financial aid office or an academic counselor to
Currently, 151 colleges belong to the National Association of Collegiate Esports (NACE) and several schools offer a range of scholarships for incoming and prospective students.
In 2014, colleges and universities started offering video game scholarships for gamers and students interested in careers in gaming. As previously mentioned, Harrisburg University was the first college to offer full-ride scholarships to its entire varsity esports team in 2018, which ushered in more scholarships and financial aid for esports players and students studying game development, design, etc.
The first college to offer a gaming scholarship was Robert Morris University, Illinois. The university premiered scholarships covering up to 50% tuition and 50% room and board for the 2014 fall semester. Students at Robert Morris can earn up to $19,000 a year in video gaming scholarships.
College and universities started offering scholarships for gaming after Robert Morris' success, and the NACE reported giving $15 million in financial aid on behalf of esports.
Esports provides these scholarships because of the rising prominence of esports in the collegiate field. Riding the insurgence of the gaming world, esports venues and game tournaments have partnered with schools like NYU's Game Center to finance students' passion and career aspirations. Scholarships are an excellent way to pay for the rising cost of attending college and because esports is considered a varsity sport, colleges do offer esports scholarships.
If you are a prospective student, it is recommended that you apply for scholarships as soon as possible and stay on top of deadlines early in the school year. High school students and high school seniors usually apply the summer before their incoming year.
A majority of these scholarships will consider your application at the time that you are applying to college, but there are scholarships for any education level as well.
Make sure to gather the necessary materials and information early on to avoid becoming overwhelmed - especially once the school year starts. If you are unable to find scholarships that early, don't worry! There are deadlines all throughout the year so there will be many scholarships still available outside of that window.
If you are a student looking to receive an esports scholarship, you most likely will be in contact with a recruiter or contact for the university while you're still in high school. You might have to make a highlight video or provide vital stats that show your strengths as a player. Some recruiters might even as you try out before you join a varsity esports team.
Scholarships are generally not considered income so, in most cases, you won't have to pay taxes on the scholarships you receive. However, there are exceptions to this rule so always be sure to check with your scholarship provider. For example, the money generally will not be taxed if the funds are used for qualified college costs, including tuition, course fees, and books.
In contrast, if the money is used to pay for college-related costs like room, board, and travel, or if the money was given in the form of a teaching assistantship, then it may be taxed. Additionally, if you receive scholarship money that is worth more than your total educational costs, the excess may be taxed.