The first person to receive an eSports scholarship in the UK, Julia Cwierz, is set to graduate tomorrow from the University of Roehampton with a first class degree in Law and recognition as the top performing graduate on her course.
Cwierz, 21, will be going on to study LLM Legal Practice in September as she trains to become a solicitor.
After starting to game online when she was 13, Julia soon began to compete in eSports when she found PC strategy game League of Legends. Julia plays the role of a ‘jungler’ in the game, an influential position which dictates the team strategy and assists teammates using a more specialised playing style. Over the past few years she has risen to the Diamond rank, putting her in the top 1.5% of League of Legends players in the West Europe region.
Julia became the team captain for the first official League of Legends team at the University of Roehampton, and went on to compete in the National University eSports League (NUEL) twice. This, together with her strong academic performance, led her to receive the first eSports scholarship from the University, the first of its kind across the UK.
To add to her successes in the eSports arena, Julia also received the Oxford University Press Law Prize, given to the highest overall performer for the year’s Law cohort at the University. Other achievements include an appearance at the very first VidCon in London, the world’s largest video game industry conference, where she was a part of an industry panel focused on the topic of profiting from eSports.
Julia said: “I am excited for the next stage of my studies after an amazing experience at the University of Roehampton. Competing in eSports whilst studying an intensive course like law was challenging due to the additional extracurricular activities I have engaged in such as volunteering and professional experience, but I wouldn’t have changed anything.
“Looking ahead, I am primarily focusing on my legal career but by no means am I ruling out the eSports path. After finishing my LPC I will most likely have at least a year off, due to the training contracts starting dates, when I would like to get more engaged in eSports.
“Something I feel strongly about is female representation in eSports. Currently there are no women in the top League of Legends eSports teams even though 45% of people who play games are women. I am currently involved in an initiative in the works to create an all-female team and I’m excited to see where that leads.”