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Las Vegas valley gamer levels-up esports community in Nevada

Posted at 9:09 AM, Apr 01, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-01 15:29:33-04

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — Hieu Le is on a quest to expand Nevada’s presence in a multi-billion dollar industry with the Nevada Esports Education League.

“Esports is growing in Nevada,” Le said. “We are able to fund students with better technology, we're able to help teach them new computer skills and to help build their career for the future.”

The Nevada Esports and Education League was developed after Le attended the 2018 Rocket League World Championship in Las Vegas.

“I just loved it so much that I did an after-party,” Le said.

Organizing an after-party for his fellow Las Vegas gamers was a success, which led Le to organize a Smash Bros. Tournament in town, which led him to create the non-profit.

The Nevada Esports Education League was created at the beginning of the pandemic — when social isolation, virtual learning and the physical and mental effects of the pandemic were significantly impacting young people.

The online community organized socially-distanced community service projects like the Pokemon GO park clean-up, they held virtual fundraisers for Mental Health and Direct Relief, and it continued to host video game tournaments with scholarship prizes, like the one here at the Cox Innovation Lab at the Historic Westside School. It’s all at no cost to the young people who participate.

“My future aspirations are to build esports in colleges throughout the whole state and to finally have a college-level and high school-level esports program.

Last year, the esports industry raked in $3 billion, and Le saw that younger generations were controlling this industry. Millennials were competing for millions of dollars as esports athletes or earning a living through video game development and testing. Le wanted to help his peers in Nevada level up in this booming industry.

The Nevada Esports Education League also helped pass the first-ever Esports Commission bill in the country, which could attract more major tournaments and esports companies to the state.