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The North Wind

The North Wind

The North Wind

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Hi! My name is Hannah Jenkins, and I am one of the copy editors here at the North Wind. I am a sophomore at NMU, and I love all things writing and editing-related. I am proud to be a part of this great...

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The North Wind is an independent student publication serving the Northern Michigan University community. It is partially funded by the Student Activity Fee. The North Wind digital paper is published daily during the fall and winter semesters except on university holidays and during exam weeks. The North Wind Board of Directors is composed of representatives of the student body, faculty, administration and area media.

Opinion — Its okay to outgrow your college friends
Opinion — It's okay to outgrow your college friends
Megan PoeApril 12, 2024

Esports: The newest team on campus

Photo courtesy of NMU Esports Club

Over the past year, NMU has added yet another team to its varsity athletics: Esports. 

The Esports team started as a club that over time has gotten permission to start up an actual team and be more than just a club. So what did that mean for Northern’s newest squad? First, they needed a coach, and William Garetto-Balmer was hired as the program’s first-ever in May. Another question that needed to be answered was, where would they practice? Fortunately, there was an answer as over the summer there has been a plan to build a gaming room in Harden Hall for the Esports team. The project is ongoing and will be completed in November. 

“The Esports arena will consist of three rows of 30 high-end gaming PCs with custom NMU Esports chairs, a lounge area for the players to review their games and watch games played and a desk near the entrance to check people in and help them with set-up if needed,” Garetto-Balmer said.

Junior mobile and web app development major Mark Kirkendall, president of the Esports Club, said that the team had just started up the week of Sept. 7 with their practices being virtual until they can get into their gaming room to play. 

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“Due to the room not being complete yet we are meeting remotely over Discord for practices and meetings,” Kirkendall said. “Because of the team just starting this year we don’t have any competitions lined up yet but the coach is trying to find some competition for us.”

The team does not have a lot of competition, especially during an unprecedented time like this. Practice is in fact, the only experience that Kirkendall has had as he has yet to compete in a competition, he said. Despite that, Kirkendall doesn’t lack fun experiences.

“My favorite part about being on the team is how helpful everyone is in learning new things about League of Legends,” Kirkendall said.

As the semester goes on, so do the team’s hopes of seeing their new game room completely finished. And that’s when the freshest era on campus will officially begin.

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