18Nov Community Invited to Ribbon Cutting for Marion Tech Esports Arena Powered by Pillar Credit Union by Wendy Weichenthal (Marion) Marion Technical College and the Marion Area Chamber of Commerce invites the alumni, students, and the public to attend the ribbon-cutting for the Esports Arena Powered by Pillar Credit Union on Thursday, December 2, 2021, in Bryson Hall on the Marion Campus. Appetizers will be served at 11:15 a.m. and the ceremony will begin at 11:30 a.m. “We are excited to bring the public to this state-of-the-art computer gaming lab and to meet Sam Moore, the Esports Coordinator, and Coach, and members of the Esports team,” said Dr. Amy Adams, Vice President of Planning and Advancement for Marion Tech. “We value the great community support for our students, especially from Pillar Credit Union.” From left to right: Dr. Ryan McCall, President of Marion Tech; Mike Stuckey, Director of the MTC Foundation; Daniel Bradshaw, Marketing Manager of Pillar; Chris Gibson, CFO of Pillar; and Dr. Amy Adams, Vice President of Planning and Advancement at Marion Tech. Members of the public can try their hand at gaming, enjoy some swag, and mingle with students, faculty, and staff. “Pillar Credit Union is thrilled to sponsor the new Esports Program at Marion Tech. The decision to invest and support this is a ‘no-brainer.’ This program is such a novel and creative idea and investment in enriching the students. The positive impact on the students with this designated space on campus is huge,” said Vidya Iyengar, President, and CEO of Pillar Credit Union. “Congratulations to the progressive thinkers at Marion Tech and we wish the Esports Program great success with so much to look forward to in the years ahead.” Vidya Iyengar, President and CEO of Pillar Credit Union Marion Tech values Pillar’s partnership and support for a sport popular with people of all ages and abilities. According to a 2021 Survey from the Entertainment Software Association, 76% of US children and two out of three American adults play video games, a figure which increased during the COVID-19 pandemic. The average video gamer is 31 years old. Nearly half of the video gamers are female. Sam Moore, Esports Coordinator “The Marion Tech Leaders Esports program is focused on creating an inclusive, welcoming space for students to play games, engage in club activities, and compete nationally with other colleges and universities,” Moore said. The Marion Tech Esports Club is a welcoming atmosphere for running events and playing games with friends. Moore is recruiting talent for a variety of games, from Super Smash Brothers to League of Legends, Overwatch, and more. “There’s nothing else like that around here. It includes all ages and genders. That’s part of the reason we got behind it,” said Daniel Bradshaw, Marketing Manager for Pillar Credit Union. “We value Pillar Credit Union’s investment in our students. This will help create richer opportunities for our students,” said Dr. Ryan McCall, president of Marion Tech. With more than 2,673 students, Marion Tech services a broad section of students from ages 12 to working parents across many counties and helps them get to their next dream, degree, certification, or goal. For more information on the Marion Tech Esports program, go to mtc.edu. For more on Pillar Credit Union, go to bankwithpillar.com.