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An Esports first for the College and Hartlepool

Esports Students at Hartlepool College
Left to right; Paul Donnelly (ESports Lecturer) and ESports Students; Alex Bunney, Joshua Gravett, and William Callaghan.

Overcoming serious injury during his studies, William Callaghan is set to become the first in town to head to university to study Esports. William is just one of six students to have formed part of the college’s maiden Esports course.

He aims to continue on the esports path after being offered a place at Manchester’s UCFB Etihad Campus, where he will study for a degree in esports. The study of esports, otherwise known as competitive video gaming, can lead to jobs as a social media influencer, video production editor, and data analyst.

Paul Donnelly, an ESports lecturer at Hartlepool College, said: “It’s fantastic. William will be one of the first people in the country to go on such a course. This has been a huge experience for them all. They have developed so many different skills from doing the esports qualification. Their attitudes, confidence, general knowledge, problem-solving, and employability skills have all improved massively.“Will now has a fully focused career path ahead of him and he is showing that esports is a viable career option.” He added: “This is the start of a new generation of opportunities and I am so proud this group of students will be at the forefront of that."

Esports students gaming at a mini-game con event at Hartlepool College
L3 Esports students gaming at a mini game-con event at HCFE in May 2022.

William, 19, is a former pupil at English Martyrs and Sacred Heart schools in Hartlepool. While open-minded about the role he will end up in but is confident esports will be the industry he will work in. He said: “I would like to be part of an esports media team involved in the live streaming. There are actually so many job opportunities in esports.”

William and the rest of Hartlepool College’s first Level 3 ESports group had to get through their studies during Covid lockdowns and he also had to have months off because he broke his collarbone and required surgery.

Josh Gravett also pictured has been accepted for a place at York St John’s where he will study business and economics, while Alex Bunney is in line to head to Sunderland University for a degree in social media management.

Fellow BTEC Level 3 ESports students Michael Smith, Spencer Butler, and Travis Prest are all looking at different options and progression as an alternative rather than Higher Education. 

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