Max Lawson wants to take competitive online gaming or Esports into more schools around Aotearoa.
The teacher aide and student hopes the skills he’s learning doing a Te Wānanga o Aotearoa Bachelor of Education (Primary Teaching) degree in Rotorua will help him achieve that goal.
“My vision is to take Esports around New Zealand. I want to have it treated as any other sport would at school.”
Max and fellow first-year programme classmate, Manaaki Vercoe, are currently helping to develop an Esports programme at Rotorua Primary School, which already has students participating in online gaming.
“Fred Whata (the school’s principal) suggested that we get the Bachelor of Education qualification to help further us,” says Max.
The passionate gamer was originally against the idea of studying and gaining a qualification.
“I thought I would be able to do my job without the qualification. But the skills that study has been giving me are amazing. I didn’t realise how much it would help me with what I’m currently doing on the job.”
Being able to study locally has meant that Max can attend classes on campus and then take what he’s learning straight back in to Rotorua Primary School in his teacher aide role.
“I’m able to test out what I’m learning straight afterwards in the classes that I’m teaching. It’s so helpful for implementing things and understanding them,” says Max.
He was also pleased with the cost of the degree, saying it was nothing like he thought it was going to be.
“It’s really easy to manage, including the cost. It’s worth what you put in for what you’re getting back.”
The 24-year-old plans to complete his degree by 2023 and eventually move on to furthering his goal of introducing Esports into other schools around the country.