Burnley College has teamed up with the esports arm of Premier League football club Burnley FC to foster the next generation of pro gaming talent.
The college is teaching the esports BTEC qualification developed by Pearson and the British Esports Association, which covers a variety of areas including business marketing, event planning, broadcasting, production and more.
Burnley College’s new facility has been renamed to the Burnley FC Esports Academy as part of the partnership, and players at the college will represent Burnley FC Esports in the British Esports Student Championships in games like Rocket League, Overwatch, League of Legends and Valorant.
Some players will also join up with the Burnley FC’s FIFA players in the FIFA 22 Global Series.
There are plans to increase the size of the joint facilities used at the college and Turf Moor, Burnley FC’s home ground.
Ed Foulds, Burnley College’s digital and esports curriculum manager, said in this announcement post on the Burnley FC website: “This is such an incredible opportunity for our learners to be playing for the Burnley FC Esports academy teams.
“Through this partnership we are founding the Elite Esports Athlete Programme where the next generation of Burnley FC Pro players will be scouted, compete for the development squad, receive elite level coaching and analysis, and develop their skills through the input of industry leading lecturers, coaches and current club professionals.”
Burnley FC’s head of esports, Steve Hawthorn, added: “It’s great to have a Premier League football club partner with their local college, on such an exciting and evolving project.
“The esports partnership was a win-win for both the club and the college, as their course attracts the best gamers and esports personnel with their state-of-the-art facilities and our global brand can further elevate this.”
Dom is an award-winning writer who graduated from Bournemouth University with a 2:1 degree in Multi-Media Journalism in 2007.
As a long-time gamer having first picked up the NES controller in the late ’80s, he has written for a range of publications including GamesTM, Nintendo Official Magazine, industry publication MCV as well as Riot Games and others. He worked as head of content for the British Esports Association up until February 2021, when he stepped back to work full-time on Esports News UK and as an esports consultant helping brands and businesses better understand the industry.