The Black Collegiate Gaming Association (BCGA) has officially kicked off its annual Corners to Colleges Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBC) program this month, giving high school students a week of HBCU college prep gaming. While staying at these campuses, students are granted access to college advisors in campus gaming and innovation labs, where they can work on case studies and projects from BCGA corporate partners.
“First and foremost, the purpose of the Corners to Colleges program is to let high school students know that the gaming industry is more than just playing the video games at home,” said Keshia Walker, Founder and Chairwoman of the BCGA. “Secondly, [they receive] exposure to HBCU life and what it’s like to stay at an HBCU. Third, [they’re introduced] to all things related to gaming and technology.”
Students who participate in the program will receive weekly compensations, certificates of completion, special awards, and even scholarships to one of the BCGA member institutions.
Then, once Corners To Colleges concludes this summer, the BCGA will then shift their focus to hosting a free gaming and sports academy in the fall, which will advise attendees on how to enter and make a career in the gaming industry.
Walker hopes this will be the start of an increase in the number of people of color in the gaming industry. While the industry supports nearly 430,000 jobs, only 2% of those jobs are held by blacks.
“The numbers are dismal,” said Walker. “Less than 3% of the industry are black in terms of corporate leadership, and less than half of the industry is women of color. Over 60% of everything around games are purchased by blacks and people of color, but we are underrepresented in decision-making in this space. BCGA was created to address that.”
(All information was provided by The Seattle Medium)