Let’s Talk STEM with Dr. Calvin Mackie’s Podcast: Esports Guru Gerald Solomon talks about the global explosion of esports gaming
Kids learn STEM skills that can be transferred to a litany of different career paths from competitive esports games. It is essential that parents know its potential.
— Gerald Solomon
NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA, USA, April 13, 2022 /EINPresswire.com/ — Esports creates thousands of STEM jobs in a variety of fields
Calling esports a “work machine,” Gerald Solomon, Founder and Executive Director of the North America Scholastic Esports Federation (NASEF), says in the new episode of the Let’s Talk STEM podcast with Dr. Calvin Mackie that sports gaming platforms electronics are preparing young people with the skills they need for tomorrow’s workforce.
“It’s a multi-billion dollar industry and there are all facets to it,” Solomon says, adding that he frequently talks to parents about job opportunities in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) in the esports/gaming industry.
“You can watch kids playing on a computer, but who made the game,” Solomon asks. “Who coded it? Who organized the event? Who created the network? Who does the coaching? Who did the data analysis and used mathematical statistics to determine how to play better? Who’s doing the streaming and shoutcasting, who’s the play-by-play announcement? Who created the art? Who made the logos? Who did the marketing? Who did the business development on it? Who created the IT infrastructure? It’s all STEM. And this is the future.
Exactly, how big is the esport?
Solomon says an event at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn sold out 19,000 in three hours, but that’s not even the real story.
“The real statistic is that more people have watched kids play computers against other kids on the digital platform called Twitch than the total number of people who watched the Super Bowl, watched the NBA championships, and watched the Major League Baseball championship combined,” he said. “Imagine what it’s like when you have an audience of hundreds of millions of people sitting around watching kids play on computers. This tells you the impact of esports games.
A shining example of esports and STEM learning: NASEF has just launched a project that creates a “Farmcraft” world in the popular game Minecraft. “We teach children around the world agricultural biotechnology. We teach them about climate change, all the Sustainable Development Goals and the issues we in the world face. And they do it throughout the play. They work as a team… They learn entrepreneurship, they learn innovation, they do it through experience. “
Additionally, Solomon says that esports allows kids from different backgrounds to play games and compete against each other without any identity issues.
“You put them together in these clubs and they find purpose and meaning because they’re with like-minded people,” he exclaims. “And you know, the interesting thing about esports and online gaming is (no one knows) whether you’re male or female, whether you’re black or white or brown. (We) don’t know what your gender preference. (We) don’t even know what country you’re in. You come in with these avatars and you represent yourself through that lens and you start to develop relationships and friends.
Dr Mackie agrees, saying, “Not only do you connect, play and learn, but kids learn transferable skills that can be transferred to other jobs. There are a litany of different career paths that could arise from esports and gaming. And I think it’s really important for parents to hear that because they can understand that these kids can take this habit that they have, or this hobby, and get into something else.
Dr. Mackie thanked Solomon for founding the STEM ecosystem approach years ago and integrating his STEM NOLA program into it. Dr. Mackie is building a STEM Innovation Center in New Orleans and it will include a giant esports arena. “So the kids can come in after school or on Saturdays to practice and compete,” he says, noting that he looks forward to helping kids in black and brown communities experience the esports and learn technology and skills for the jobs of tomorrow.
An archive of Let’s Talk STEM podcast episodes with Dr. Calvin Mackie is HERE.
(For interviews with Dr. Mackie, please contact Michael Frisby at 202-625-4328 or [email protected])
ABOUT STEM GLOBAL ACTION
Dr. Calvin Mackie founded STEM NOLA in 2013. The New Orleans nonprofit is committed to expanding STEM education, especially in communities of color. In July 2021, Dr. Mackie launched STEM Global Action (https://stemglobalaction.com/), a campaign and network pursuing STEM education for children, parents and communities. Its initiatives have impacted more than 100,000 students, 20,000 families and 5,000 schools across the United States and in five countries.
The STEM Global Action website includes:
STEM Global Action Today (https://stemglobalaction.com/stem-global-action-today/), a newsletter featuring comprehensive articles on some of the most important STEM issues, and takes readers through life STEM educators and their extraordinary students, who will be the STEM leaders of tomorrow.
STEM Global Action Data Center (https://stemglobalaction.com/stem-data-center/), a one-stop resource library for STEM studies, reports, video presentations and news coverage.
Michael K. Frisby
Frisby & Associates
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