The Washington Justice is the latest Overwatch League team to formally partner with a university and offer training opportunities for the next generation of esports, the organization announced today. Shenandoah University, a private university located in Winchester, Virginia, will be teaming up with the Justice over the next two years.
Students from Shenandoah will be given internship opportunities within the Washington Justice organization, giving them hands-on experiences that will be useful in a variety of future careers. These include critical esports positions like social media management and event production as well as more broad areas like business operations.
“Through this partnership, we aim to provide Shenandoah students with real, tangible industry experience, so they can be well-equipped for their first career following graduation,” said Grant Paranjape, vice president of esports business within the Washington Justice.
The Washington Justice internships will be available from the beginning of 2021 and will run through the summer of 2022. “This partnership will prepare our students to work in the esports industry with real-world experiences and networking opportunities,” said Joey Gawrysiak, Ph.D., director of esports at Shenandoah.
This is the latest formal partnership between an Overwatch League team and a local university. Other teams, such as the Florida Mayhem and Los Angeles Valiant, have previously involved universities in content and competition. As the collegiate esports scene grows and with many colleges sponsoring Overwatch teams, these partnerships are likely to expand.
Correction Dec. 8 6:02pm CT: A previous version of this article said this was the first formal partnership between an Overwatch League team and a local university. This was incorrect. The San Francisco Shock partnered with the University of California, Berkeley in April 2018. This article has been updated to reflect that information. We regret this error.