Stockton University, Camden County College create first esports degree pathway program in state

Stockton University became the first public institution in New Jersey to offer an undergraduate degree in esports when the Bachelor of Science in esports management program debuted this fall, and Camden County College’s Associate in Applied Science in esports production degree is the only one of its kind in the region.

Now, the two programs have joined to create the first esports degree pathway program in the state.

“This program is a testament to our shared vision of providing high-quality education and opportunities for the next generation of esports professionals,” Stockton President Joe Bertolino said. “We recognize the potential of esports as a growing global phenomenon and the need for qualified professionals to drive its continued success.”

“The schools worked closely to align their curricula so that it’s seamless for the students to complete both an associate degree and a bachelor’s degree in eight semesters,” Bob Heinrich, Stockton’s vice president for enrollment management, said.

The university will accept Camden’s classes as course equivalents to satisfy Stockton’s requirements for an undergraduate degree.

Sarah Iepson, CCC’s dean of liberal arts and professional studies, said this is not a program that produces kids who play video games.

“This is a program that produces critical thinkers and students who have really powerful skills of analysis and thought, as well as these great skills in the world of business and marketing,” Iepson said. “It’s just a really phenomenal opportunity for our students.”

Noel Criscione-Naylor, a Stockton associate professor and program chair of esports management, said CCC’s focus on esports production provides students with extremely valuable technical experience on how to stream and broadcast events, and Stockton’s program will build on that.

“Not only are our students going to have the technical ability to maneuver as the industry emerges, but, on top of that, our students are going to have solid foundations in business, finance, marketing and event management that will allow them to enter the esports ecosystem in a way that no other student can today,” she said.

Hopefully, this agreement will create more esports-related experiences for students, including camps and tournaments, and explore more regional and national partnerships, said David Bruno, CCC’s associate dean of educational programming and external relations.

“We look forward to working with Stockton University, one of our higher education pathways partners, to make South Jersey a regional and national hub for esports collegiate activities,” Bruno, who also oversees CCC’s esports program, said.