Johnson C. Smith’s New Esports & Gaming Trifecta Program Is Setting an HBCU Standard


by Veracity Savant

November 17, 2023

They’re charting a new path!

Johnson C. Smith University (JCSU) launched its Esports and Gaming Trifecta program in January 2020, making history as the first HBCU to offer the program to students. The program features an Esports and Gaming management academic arm, an Esports Lab, and a competitive Esports Club, which has already begun making a name for itself in collegiate sports. Now the program has crafted itself as the blueprint for other historically Black colleges and universities, modeling what’s possible in the esports and gaming sector and acquiring state, regional, international, and congressional awards along the way, JCSU.edu reports. 

In 2021, the school was nominated for the 2021 Esports Collegiate Award, and in 2023, JCSU became the first HBCU nominated for the Esports Business Summit Collegiate Esports/Gaming Program of the Year. JSCU also launched its HBCU Esports team store and co-produced the first-ever HBCU Esports Conference and Career Expo in the blockchain sector in partnership with Florida-based tech company MetArena. 


Now, the JCSU Esports and Gaming Trifecta have partnered with Discovery Place Science, scheduled to host an event at its “Science on the Rocks” event on November 17th from 6-10 pm. The event will focus on everything you need to know about gaming, including what esports is, various gaming careers, the positive cognitive benefits of gaming, how to combat toxicity in gaming, fraud prevention, racism, sexism, parental controls, predatory behaviors, and scamming. 

“We are honored to partner with Discover Place Science, a leader in STEM education in the Carolinas, to produce an informational session on esports and gaming that will provide gamers, non-gamers, and the parents of gamers with the fundamentals, as well as benefits of gamification,” said Dr. BerNadette Lawson-Williams, founder of JCSU’s Esports and Gaming Trifecta. 

The goal is to expose the community to all of the opportunities within the sector and discuss the potential risks. “Science on the Rocks” is an event that won Charlotte Magazine’s Best of the Best Award. The monthly event for adults only allows access to Discovery Place Science’s exhibits, lab activities, feature documentaries, and planetary shows. 


“It is a wonderful opportunity for people to learn more about what esports is and how gaming is so much more than a hobby,” said JCSU Esports club president Kyla Thomas. 

You can purchase your tickets for the JCSU Esports and Gaming Trifecta & Discover Place Science event here

Cover photo: Johnson C. Smith’s New Esports & Gaming Trifecta Program Is Setting an HBCU Standard/Photo by Johnson C. Smith University


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