MTN DEW has introduced the MTN DEW Real Change Challenge as part of its ongoing commitment to support and promote Black gamers at HBCUs across the nation. The MTN DEW Real Change Challenge will aid HBCU student gamers by supporting a national HBCU esports competition with an emphasis on improving Black presence in esports and gaming. Participants will fight for a total prize fund of $500,000, mentorship from pros in the esports industry, and a gaming deal with MTN DEW that could last up to a year.
The MTN DEW Real Change Opportunity Fund, which the brand committed to creating last year, is a program that gives winners of a special competition the tools, programs, and financing they need to transform their ideas into successful enterprises. As the MTN DEW Real Change Challenge, a national Call of Duty competition for HBCU student gamers, enters its second year, MTN DEW is assisting Black gamers by collaborating with the HBCU Esports League, which is owned by Cxmmunity Media, an organization committed to future-proofing diversity and equity in gaming.
“Unfortunately, Black representation within esports and the gaming industry is disproportionally low. MTN DEW recognizes the opportunity gap that Black gamers face as they explore gaming as a viable career path, and we’re trying to close that gap with the MTN DEW Real Change Challenge,” says Pat O’Toole, chief marketing officer, MTN DEW. “We are continuing our commitment to make a tangible investment in the Black gamers of tomorrow, as well as continuing our ongoing support of HBCUs, by rallying around them to showcase their skills and take their place in the gaming industry. MTN DEW is proud to fuel these competitors on their journey through the Real Change Challenge and provide much-needed resources and funding to empower the next generation.”
HBCU students from all around the country are invited to participate in the MTN DEW Real Change Challenge to compete for a total prize pool of $500,000. The Real Change Challenge will begin with 16 teams competing in a bracket-style competition, and it will conclude with The Ultimate Game, a championship match between the top two HBCU teams in the country. These two gaming behemoths will compete for bragging rights and a $80,000 first-place reward. In addition, MTN DEW will choose four players from the competition as Real Change Challenge All-Stars based on their individual performance and sportsmanship. Each All-Star will get $50,000 in addition to a sponsorship from MTN DEW lasting up to a year, mentorship, and unmatched access to esports professionals.
“It is an honor to partner with MTN DEW on its Real Change Challenge and further our shared mission of future-proofing diversity and equity in gaming,” says Ryan Johnson, CEO of Cxmmunity Media. “As one of the first organizations to put a stake in the ground on getting more HBCU students engaged in esports, it’s refreshing to see brands like MTN DEW leverage its resources and community ties to invest in driving more diversity within the industry. Together, we can pave the way for the next generation of Black gamers and innovators to have a seat at the table.”
MTN DEW and the HBCU Esports League will broadcast all tournament matches featuring the HBCU teams and their journeys to the Real Change Challenge final in order to showcase the journey of the HBCU student gamers competing in the competition. Gamers may watch the competition live on Cxmmunity’s Twitch starting on November 9.
The MTN DEW Real Change Challenge is now open for registration starting today, September 27th through October 28th.