How the Mission Valley YMCA is using esports for kids – NBC 7 San Diego

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It’s a billion-dollar industry that’s really starting to “power up” in San Diego.

Electronic sports – or Esports – programs are popping up at local high schools, universities, and even the YMCA.

On Monday, the Mission Valley YMCA became the first YMCA in San Diego County to launch an Esports program.

“Esports is a competitive environment,” Associate Executive Director Jason Milosh said. “So it’s very similar to the youth basketball or soccer that the Y runs, isn’t it? Only — it’s video games.

The Y collaborated with the North American Scholastic Esports Federation (NASEF) to develop the program. Milosh said he focused on healthy competition rather than rivalry.

“There are fights going on, but in a fun way with cartoon characters,” he said. “We have practices and the coaches help the kids understand the strategies and develop their skills.”

Attendees also learn about the different career paths available in esports.

“The college scene is starting to mature, and there are scholarships out there to learn game design, how to make games, and how to run the gaming business,” Milosh said.

In October, San Diego State University began offering an online professional certificate in esports, and UC San Diego recently opened the Triton Esports Center.

UCSD has partnered with several corporate sponsors to equip the facility with the latest and greatest gaming technology and make it accessible to all students. The university also offers several Esports scholarships.

UCSD Junior Sam Ivezich received a $1,500 scholarship for Esports.

“I know that if I wanted to get into esports or gaming, there would be a career waiting for me, just because of all the industry help and training and resources I had here at UCSD. “, Ivezich said.

Training and resources are now available to players, even the youngest ones.

The Mission Valley YMCA Esports program is starting virtually, but its goal is to eventually create a space similar to that of UC San Diego. To learn more about the program, click here.

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