- The University of Nevada Las Vegas' International Gaming Institute will soon launch its eSports Lab, a learning and innovation hub where students will research the business, analytics and culture of professional video game design and competitive play.
- Officials say the parallels between casino and gaming and the video gaming industry are closely related, making UNLV the ideal campus for exploration of the $400 million industry.
- eSports is among the most searched topics on YouTube, among the most-attended sporting events, and grosses championships earnings exceeded only by the World Series of Poker and the Super Bowl.
If there is an ideal vision of how to connect higher education with an industry of the future, UNLV is perhaps the primary example of it. Much like MIT's Institute for Soldier Nanotechnology, institutions which commit resources and research to burgeoning industries will reap benefits in the way of federal contracts for development or investment from corporations to guide workforce development or industrial best practices.
With gaming expected to exceed $1 billion in earnings by 2019, and having potential to become an Olympic sport, UNLV is showcasing a model that could work for agriculture, public health, technology and other industries with projected growth — if college leaders can visualize and raise funds to support mission-based industrial connections.