Carrot Group announced that they have begun collaborating with Lenovo™ to expand their popular esports solution for middle and high schools to more school districts nationwide. This first of its kind program, already a success in the Downey and Compton School Districts of Los Angeles, heavily incorporates science, technology, engineering, arts and math (STEAM) skills and a workforce development component. In addition to building teamwork, leadership, and problem-solving skills through competitive gameplay, participating students also meet with leading experts from the STEAM fields throughout the esports program and learn about their jobs and how gaming influenced their careers.
Carrot Group’s mission is to engage and inspire students to pursue STEAM fields. Research shows that high school students who play video games on a regular basis are 3x more likely to major in a STEAM related field in college. Esports is one of the fastest-growing industries in the world. Major colleges across the country are offering millions in scholarships both in front of and behind the screen. However, the real opportunity for students is behind the screens, not playing them, and esports is a great vehicle to get students interested in game design, programming, coding, and other technical skills.
“There will be millions of STEAM related jobs unfilled in a few years and we need to get students interested in those fields. Collaborating with Lenovo on our esports program is an exciting opportunity to motivate more students to learn and pursue STEAM fields through gaming,” said Alan Zack, president of Carrot Group. “Lenovo is a great partner for us because we have a shared vision of using technology to improve learning and creating innovative paths to achieve it. We are thrilled to expand our reach so more school districts and students can access our popular and inspiring program.”
“The response from schools we’ve been working with has been extraordinary,” says Rich Henderson, Director of Global Education Solutions at Lenovo. “For many reasons, education institutions are ready to begin or expand esports programs but need assistance with IT, stakeholders, and scholastic connections to get started. Together, with Carrot Group, we are able to reach more schools and bring the benefits of esports in a learning environment to more students.”
Every esports program has a workforce development component included. All participating students can enroll in two of three online Game Design classes for free offered through Orange Coast College, worth three graded transferable college credits on their transcript for each of two classes. The winning team of the tournament receives free entry into a week-long game design bootcamp and a trip to meet game designers.