Park University to add varsity video gaming to athletic department

July 17, 2018 - 4:36 am

Park University is set to become the first school in the metro to offer varisty esports, where participants use video screens and electronic game controls in head-to-head competition.

Video screens, super fast consoles, the perfect lighting, and lightning-fast thumb skills are some of the features at Park's soon-to-be finished "Parkcade". Starting in the spring, Park will offer varsity esports, where the best gamers form seven-person teams.

"We wanted to make sure that A, we were the first in Kansas City, and B, we are on the forefront," said Steve Wilson, associate athletic director. 

The esports team will be governed by the National Association of Collegiate Esports, an office within the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics. 

Luis Saldivar, a former competitive esport player who lives in Kansas City, would spend eight to 12 hours a day developing his gaming skills.

"It depends on how much you want to commit to getting better as a player," Saldivar said. "That could take months, that could take years."

Park plans to offer scholarships for the best gamers. The school is in the midst of a national search for a coach for their team.

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