California State University, Dominguez Hills
1000 E. Victoria Street, Carson, CA 90747
CARSON, Calif. – Nearing its completion and scheduled for inauguration this Spring, the California State University Dominguez Hills Esports Incubator Lab will deliver an exclusive space to university students interested in the technology and gaming arenas. The first of its kind laboratory will exist within the University Library and promises to provide a small degree of relief to the stress and emotional difficulties brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. It will also help reconnect students to the campus after a near 2-year hiatus. CSUDH Esports President and Director of Diversity and Inclusion Alexandra Warren-Carrasco, who experienced the complexities and disconnect of remote learning as a student, is helping guide the university’s post-pandemic transition.
“It’s been especially difficult during the pandemic to personalize your college experience,” she says. “I personally transferred [during] quarantine. I came to [Dominguez Hills] when there were no physical classes. The Esports association became my way to interact with my peers.” “The online aspect of the Esports association is what makes it so unique as a way for students to
engage,” she continues. “They can engage online AND in person, which is unlike most competitive collegiate sports. The facility will help the club expand by giving our virtual engagement an in-person outlet. Community bonds are only strengthened by having a physical lab. Not only will it provide community spot for those who are already a part of CSUDH Esports, but it will also attract others who feel there is not a place for them on campus. The lab will be the heart of our community!”
As many institutions of learning are implementing their respective curricula and reacclimating students to in-class learning, most are looking into the role of technology. CSUDH is positioning itself as a collegiate frontrunner in Esports. The Incubator lab will be the creative epicenter for the promotion of student projects, a workshop for the cultivation of ideas and a showcase for competitive gaming.
The growth of Esports has generated an industry of increasing economic and cultural importance. The Incubator lab will satisfy the needs of student innovators from multiple disciplines looking for a career in the vast and lucrative arenas of gaming and technology. Students will have access to valuable networking opportunities and a means to create and expand their digital portfolios. Gaming developers will have access to both the lab and the students for research and development purposes. The lab will host player focus groups on campus. The feedback gathered will directly inform game development efforts as developers and publishers are increasingly turning to experienced gamers who know exactly what they want and need out of the games they play.