Los Angeles-based amateur esports platform PlayVS and educational platform company Stiegler EdTech (SET) announced Tuesday a new partnership to bring STEM and digital upskilling to students participating in the company’s esports competitions in North Carolina. while this deal initially focuses on North Carolina, the companies are exploring further collaboration in other regions throughout North America.
Financial terms of this partnership were not disclosed.
Under terms of this deal, SET has been named “the official PlayVS STEM, training, and workforce development partner,” bringing its digital upskilling tools to students in over 700 high schools in 100 counties in North Carolina.
This move by SET follows a partnership agreement with the UNC Greensboro Scholastic Esports Alliance (UNCG SEA) and the State of North Carolina to expand Stiegler EdTech’s flagship program, the Varsity Esports and STEM League (VESL), across the entire state. PlayVS and SET will work to initially onboard hundreds of high schools to engage in competitive esports in Rocket League and Super Smash Bros Ultimate.
SET and PlayVS said in a release that VESL aims to teach coding and technology skills to students as a way to “meet the talent needs of tech employers in North Carolina.” North Carolina high school students are eligible to participate in VESL for free, according to the announcement.
In November 2023, PlayVS announced a shift in its business model that would see the company eliminate fees for students and high schools in the U.S. and Canada who want to participate in its esports ecosystem. Prior to this change, the company was charging around $80 per student, per season. Instead the company moved towards a sponsorship/partnership model to defer costs to schools in its ecosystem.