HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (April 1, 2014) – ChargerCon is back! Held each semester at The University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH), this year's gaming convention will take place April 4 and 5 in the Charger Union (CU) and will include tournaments for Brawl, Melee, Project M, Magic, Minecraft, Hearthstone, Pokémon, and League of Legends.
"ChargerCon is the biggest event on campus," says UAH junior Kyle Kosic, a co-founder of Student-Run e-Sports, the organization responsible for ChargerCon. "And for the first time it's going to be in the CU, so it's going to be a lot more centralized. There will be a large free-play area in the main lobby, with games in the conference rooms."
Another change this year, he continues, is the amount and variety of sponsors, such as title sponsor TeSPA (the eSports Association). "TeSPA is our big one this year and they're coming from Texas," says Kosic. "They are sending a couple of people out to represent TeSPA to help us grow and to promote their own organization in the area."
That makes ChargerCon not just a great place to play – or watch – the tournaments and other games, but also a great place to network. "E-sports has really grown over the past few years, and there are careers available for people," says Kosic. "And not just players but marketing, communications, management – there is a whole new genre of jobs we can filter into."
If ChargerCon stays on this path, it's going to get bigger and bigger and turn into a regional event, which is one of our goals.
UAH student and co-founder of Student-Run e-Sports
In fact, some of UAH's alumni have already gone into the field, with more than a handful working at local gaming media and technology company Curse Inc. And even those who have pursued other career fields, like recent graduate and former SRES member Nick Hanson, continue to remain involved with SRES and ChargerCon.
"I first attended the UAH LAN Party in the fall of my sophomore year, and since then I have joined, played my part, and graduated from the gaming clubs," says Hanson. "It's been wonderful getting to see the event and its volunteers grow and adapt at every turn. This year, I'm excited to see three different Smash tournaments along with half dozen other competitions!"
ChargerCon isn't just for UAH students and alumni, however. It's also open to local and regional community members interested in both e-sports and non-electronic games. "We get a lot of high school students coming in, and some end up attending UAH because of ChargerCon," says Kosic. "I think it's really significant we can affect someone that much."
Eventually, he continues, the hope is that the event will grow to attract more than just local gamers. "If ChargerCon stays on this path, it's going to get bigger and bigger and turn into a regional event, which is one of our goals," he says. "It's all about forming this large community of online gaming.
For more information about this semester's ChargerCon, including a list of tournaments and rules, visit www.chargercon.com.
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