THIBODAUX, La. — Philanthropist Rachael Callais is donating $25,000 to support the Colonel eSports team.
The money will be used to create scholarships for the players and help to establish a streaming station, which will educate students on professional broadcasting and podcasting.
“I wish I had a place like Esports during my junior high and high school years in school. I was a very shy person, didn’t have many friends and would often stay to myself. Esports gives people like me an opportunity to feel like they belong somewhere,” Callais said. “This program is for students from all walks of life. It gives them a place to socialize with other students who share a common interest: video games.”
Faculty Head Coach and Advisor Elizabeth Layton said she is thrilled to have the support of the community as the team continues to grow.
“The students are so excited to be able to have this new station because more often than not, they have been streaming from home during our matches due to limited resources,” Layton said. “Having this support from someone who loves what we’re doing just shows how gaming can bring people together.”
Callais is an avid gamer and supporter of the university. She and her sister, Leah, donated $200,000 in 2017 for new nursing computer labs in Ayo Hall, and $120,000 earlier this year to create endowed professorships in coastal studies.
Established in the spring of 2021, Colonel Esports has quickly become one of the most popular and successful clubs on the Nicholls campus. Currently, there are 40 team members split into competitive teams in leagues featuring Call of Duty, Overwatch, Valorant, League of Legends and Rocket League with plans to expand with their space.