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Australia launches its first esports scholarship

The Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane is launching the first ever esports scholarship for Australia.

The university announced it’ll reward students with five $10,000 scholarships for League of Legends in 2019. The amount will help with both studies and esports training. To mark the occasion, QUT also released a promotional video on YouTube.

The five winners will get to participate in the Oceanic Challenger Series with the official team of the university – QUT Tigers. It’s no coincidence that the scholarships are in QUT since the university was also the first to offer an esports program as well as a dedicated on-campus gaming arena. As explained in the video above, aspiring gamers will have to go through a two-step selection process. Entering an application before November 16 and then playing in the trials on January 5 2019 for a chance to earn a spot on the team. Dylan Poulus, one of the founders of the esports club, commented:

“We started this as a student project in 2016 and now five students are going to get paid to play this game—it’s absolutely insanely awesome! Esports at QUT has just exploded—we’re so excited to have these new scholarships. It’s going to be really competitive and completely merit based. Our current team can apply and so can anyone else who’s coming to QUT next year and think they have what it takes to play in the OCS.”

QUT Sport coordinator Emily Rosemond added:

“We’ve developed a new sports strategy in recent months which hinges on a high-performance approach to sport and this extends to esports. We have been working to integrate esports into the broader QUT Sport program and provide the same sort of support structures we offer high-performance athletes and teams in our Elite Athlete Program.  This is being consolidated by making esports athletes eligible for Vice-Chancellor’s Scholarships.”

With scholarships being introduced more and more to universities around the world esports are cementing their spot right beside education and traditional sports.