Courtesy: Livingstone College
SALISBURY – A state-of-the-art esports complex is coming to Livingstone College this fall.
Under the leadership of President Dr. Jimmy R. Jenkins, Sr., Livingstone College has taken the progressive and bold steps to enter into the esports arena by establishing the Livingstone College Athletics Esports Facility, to be located inside its School of Hospitality Management and Culinary Arts at 530 Jake Alexander Blvd. South.
The venue, projected to be completed in September 2021, will comprise five components: competitive esports; simulation golf; iRacing; broadcasting; and an abundance of space for social gatherings. Upon completion, Livingstone esports anticipates an active schedule and has already established facility hosting plans for 100-plus events annually.
Livingstone has contracted with Ohio-based Meridian HD to develop the estimated $1.3M project that will include a more compact facility in the Walls Center at its West Monroe Street campus, designated for students only. The larger off-campus venue will be open to the public as well as students.
Livingstone esports will include 16 competitive gaming stations; 16 social play stations; a pre-game strategy and coaching room; two golf simulation stations; a broadcasting center; two iRacing simulation units positioned in the College’s pit room; uniquely-designed esports hotel suites; and a concessions/beverage bar.
The facility will include overnight hotel rentals; large gathering halls for community and professional association meetings; and expanded athletic boarding for the College’s existing athletic programming.
“In collaboration with Meridian HD and the leadership of Dr. Jimmy R. Jenkins, Sr., we have an exciting concept that no other HBCU, or any other college for that matter, has conceptualized,” said Lamonte Massie-Sampson, Livingstone’s athletic director. “This combination of education, competition and revenue generation sets Livingstone College Athletics years ahead in this new initiative.”
After almost a year of design planning, Massie-Sampson said he is excited to know that Livingstone’s esports program will be the model for many others to follow. In addition, this type of facility will allow the college to recruit the best esports’ competitors to matriculate and graduate from Livingstone College.
“We have also dedicated scholarship money to ensure we are competing not only against other state-of-the art facilities, but with scholarships as well,” Massie-Sampson said. “When this project is completed, Livingstone will be competing and leading in the esports industry.”
There are also plans for a student-centered curriculum incorporating STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education and preparing students for career opportunities that derive from esports including, but not limited to: commercial and defense drone operators; computer programming; sports journalism and broadcasting; audio/visual entertainment professionals; content creators; and hospitality and event planning management.
“The launch of our state-of-the-art esports program this fall is demonstrative of Livingstone’s commitment to remain progressive and relevant with the programs we offer,” Jenkin said. “We are also excited for this inaugural partnership with Meridian HD as we deliver on a competitive and cutting edge esports program.”
For more information about the esports program or esports scholarships, email Lamonte Massie-Sampson at email@example.com.