New E-Gaming Room opens in Building M

Martha Carrillo and Tavit Papazian

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"Student's eyes glued to televisions while gaming." by Tavit Papazian

Remember having all your friends gather around the couch to play some games together? Spending the entire weekend trying to beat each other’s scores in “Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater”? Or blasting each other in “Goldeneye 007”? With video game franchises getting stricter on game sharing…gamers often find themselves nostalgic for “the good old days.”

 

The good old days are making a come back at Harper. 

 

Harper College’s Health and Recreation Center officially opened it’s E-Gaming Room to attract more students into building M.  The room is set up with couches that fit up to seven friends to duke it out on Nintendo Switch, or perform fatal blows in Mortal Kombat on Playstation 4. 

 

The grand opening for the E-Gaming room was on November 19. 17-year-old, Marie Davis was one of the many students who attended the E-Gaming rooms opening.

 

“I will be coming here a lot. I’m trying to find more places in the school to hangout,” Davis said. 

 

The E-Gaming room is a collaborative effort between the campus Health and Recreation Center, Harper Athletics, Students Wellness and the Dean of Students, Mary Kay Harton. The recreation center had underutilized space and was looking for ways to bring more students into M building, explained Julie Bearden, manager and director of the Health and Recreations Center.

 

For the grand opening the gaming room had: four 70” televisions, two Nintendo Switch consoles, two PlayStation 4 consoles, three gaming PC’s, board games and card game tables. 

 

More than 50 students attended the opening and enjoyed it. 

 

“I’m loving it so far. This will be a great way for me to go out and meet some more people and get further on my skills,”  Harper student  Teagan Kick stated. 

 

Students planning on attending the E-Gaming room must check out the game controllers and games with their student ID or with a member ID. All students will have a limited time span to play the console of their choice. Harper College freshman Junior Carlos, 18, is not happy with this policy. 

 

“I don’t like the idea of the time slots. I think we should be able to pass around the controller,” Carlos explained. 

 

The Health and Recreation Center’s Assistant Director of operations and special events Veronica Tantoco said the E-Gaming room focus is to help students with mental wellness. The E-Gaming room is seeking to give students the opportunity to engage but also socialize with peers. Currently, the center is used primarily by Student Athletes, but efforts are being made to allow more students to become involved in the Health and Recreational Center. 

 

“We wanted to give students who felt like they didn’t have a home at Harper College, a home”  added Harper wellness manger, Beth Ripperger. 

 

The E-Gaming room has future plans to add a ping pong table and dedicated furniture, Bearden added. 

 

The National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) launched e-sports for community colleges last year. Harper College looks forward to pursuing an e-sports league in the fall 2020 semester, according to Bearden.

 

The E-Gaming room is located in building M, room M1201, in the basement.  For hours and more information click here.