GEMS Education and Lenovo have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to accelerate opportunities for students in gaming, powered by the rollout of the Lenovo Esports program – a bespoke gaming solution for K-12 and university institutions with an interest in advancing their gaming offering.
As part of the collaboration, Lenovo has launched its first ‘Legion Gaming Zone’ at GEMS Modern Academy in Dubai – a 360-degree solution consisting of industry-leading Legion PCs and monitors for gaming immersion, high performance ThinkStation workstations for seamless designing and programming. The MoU will also provide the educational institution with Yoga Tab tablets, which will provide teachers with the tools to conduct lessons with greater visibility and efficiency and deliver on key outcomes. To keep gamers connected yet secure, the Lenovo Esports solution also leverages innovations from leading Esports venue software and services provider ggCircuit.
Commenting on the Lenovo Esports program and MoU with GEMS Education, Mohammed Hilili, General Manager, Lenovo Gulf, said, “Gaming is profoundly impacting not only the entertainment and sporting arenas, but also future job roles and upskilling. As an industry leader, GEMS Education has illustrated a clear understanding of gaming’s potential to profoundly impact students’ lives, and confidence in Lenovo to deliver an integrated and customized Esports solution. We look forward to continuing to foster this important dialogue and further strengthening our partnership in the months ahead.”
Research indicates that an estimated 90% of Esports communities within schools have either not considered or are unaware of the opportunities to represent their school at a competitive gaming level. Furthermore, many educational institutions have not considered the direct correlation between Esports and education, which can boost student engagement and foster the creation of a more inclusive community.
Gaming has been proven to promote soft skills such as teamwork and problem-solving, while Esports curriculums open new avenues for those interested in competitive play, programming and design, Esports marketing and management, and more.
The Lenovo Esports program sees the world’s leading PC manufacturer offer educational institutions an initial consultation period, followed by the creation of a bespoke roadmap and mutually-agreed goal setting to ensure that Esports remains an intelligent, long-term investment. Based on its success across other markets globally, the Lenovo Esports program has been proven to contribute towards improved academic progress and retention.
In instances where schools and universities wish to develop their Esports programs virtually, Lenovo Esports also offers an at-home strategy – delivering seamless and secure gameplay into the comfort and convenience of each student’s personal environment.
The addition of the Lenovo Esports program at GEMS Modern Academy complements the school’s status as a Dubai SME Certified Incubation Center for Entrepreneurship Development, which it acquired in 2019. Work is underway to complete rollout at a second site at GEMS FirstPoint School – The Villa. GEMS FirstPoint School became the first institution in the UAE and wider region to offer specialized International BTEC courses in Esports and Creative Media – Game Design.
Lenovo and GEMS Education intend to evolve their partnership, with potential for further expansion and rollout across other schools and markets in the Middle East.
Nargish Khambatta, Principal, GEMS Modern Academy and Vice President – Education, GEMS Education, said “Over the years, we have witnessed a paradigm shift in learning and teaching. Gaming, for example, which was seen largely as a recreational hobby, is now an enviable skill and is being considered preparatory ground for a full-time career. We are excited to be one of the first educational institutions in the region to leverage the Lenovo Esports program, and explore how gaming can be used to nurture talent, expertise and future readiness in innovative and academically stimulating ways.”
Shabeer Mohammed, Chief Information Officer, GEMS Education, said: “At GEMS, it is of utmost importance to provide the best opportunities to the students at our schools. We aim to provide environments in which they can develop as exponential thinkers while providing opportunities for students to build on their skills within their existing framework. Infrastructure is a key part of this, and we are delighted to be partnering with Lenovo on this unique project.”