Saint Andrew’s School leads the way in e-sports

[size=1][color=grey]Lower secondary students from Saint Andrew’s Secondary School taking part in the SGC 2007.[/color][/size][/center]

The Saints’ Gaming Challenge (SGC), a student organized competition for students of Saint Andrews’ Secondary School, is being held for the second year running over this week, with the finals on Thursday, 24 May 2007. GameSync takes a look at how e-sports is treated in the school from the student’s point of view.

The Saints’ Gaming Challenge features Counter-Strike 1.6 and DotA Allstars and will see some 150 students taking part in the competition. The SGC has been described by Shaun Lai, Chairman of the organizing committee, as an “ambitious” undertaking.

Shaun believes that the SGC serves a greater purpose than just being a fun activity. He sees it as an opportunity to bring both students and staff closer together, and for the student organizers to take up some responsibility and experience a little of what adult life is like.

This quickly becomes apparent as Shaun describes how the organizing committee has had to enter discussions with various student societies and clubs, the school’s accounting department, and even approach businesses outside the school to acquire supplies and sponsorship for the competition.

The organizing committee is also using the SGC as a platform to foster entrepreneurial spirit in students. The organizers, in conjunction with the Young Entrepreneurs Society, have been selling spectator passes as a means of crowd control as well as generating revenue to offset operating costs.

Although the organizing committee did face some resistance from the school, Shuan described it as nothing out of the ordinary and “not overwhelming”. He attributed it to the school making sure that proper plans were in place rather than a general resistance towards video gaming, which has often been perceived negatively by academic staff.

With the Saints’ Gaming Challenge, Saint Andrew’s Secondary school is one of the few academic institutions, and possibly the only secondary school to actively support video gaming and e-sports in a big way. Other notable institutions include Republic Polytechnic, whose Gaming.RP special interest group has been organizing gaming-related events for some time.

The SGC is a student led initiative by the Young Entrepreneurs Society, the Infocomm Club and the Photography Society, with assistance from co-ordinating teacher-in-charge Mr Koh Beng Chuan, the Saint Andrew’s Secondary School accounting department and Mr Eldon Eng, Creative Manager of Barracuda Technology.

GameSync is an Official Media Partner for the Saints Gaming Challenge 2007.

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