Letter from the Camp Director, Jeffery Collett
Hello Training Grounds Families and Participants,
It has a been a great spring session with our campers and I really can’t believe that the time has passed so quickly. I think the rapid passage of time must have something to do with having successful camps running and working in an industry that we all love! We are truly honored to work on a project like this and provide a service that doesn’t just focus on gaming, but being a better person. I know that my sports background tells me there is a real need for youth development in the esports world that is currently underserved.
As fast as spring has come and gone, summer is now upon us. We have released our summer schedule on our website and will be ramping up the amount of camps we are offering! We will continue to run our successful 6-week and 5-day camps and look to serve new regions by extending our camp options to all of North America, not just the U.S. Finally, we’ve quietly been piloting adult camps for ages 18+ and they seem to be a big hit. While our adult and youth communities will be separate, our core values will remain the same. Development and education in esports while providing a fun and engaging platform to meet others with common interests.
TG Announces AimLab Scholarships
TG Announces Executive Director
Cloud9 has grown to become one of the top esports organizations and recognized worldwide throughout the community. We are incredibly excited to announce our partnership with AimLab to be able to provide our Women in Gaming Scholarship through Training Grounds. Cloud9 also prides itself on being a leader and taking initiative and as we move into June we want to celebrate Pride month and our commitment to supporting the LGBTQIA+ community.
For the past several years Cloud9 has made the commitment to give back to the community by donating $4,000 to the LA LGBT Center, Trans Lifeline, and the Ali Forney Center. We understand in the gaming world that women and members of the LGBTQIA+ community can be the target for online harassment and toxicity.
Training Ground strives to create a safe space for gamers of all genders, races, ethnicities, abilities and orientations, to join in an experience that will help build gamers and give them the skills necessary to be successful in and out of the game. It’s always been the goal of Cloud9 to promote diversity, practice inclusion, and support all of its players within the program. These scholarships will help ensure that these goals at Training Grounds are met in order to make our community rich in diversity.
Cloud9 is thrilled to welcome the newest member of our organization, Samir Bolar, as the Executive Director of Cloud9 Training Grounds! Samir brings with him a profound wealth of experience in the educational and technological sectors, and we are excited to have him at the helm of our continued development of Training Grounds as a holistic learning experience for young gamers.
Samir joins us after nearly four years at Teach for America, where he served as the Chief Impact Officer for the Bay Area region. During his tenure there, Samir helped oversee the professional development of 400 teachers across the cities of Oakland, Richmond, San Francisco, and San Jose. In addition to his time with Teach for America, Samir also co-founded the national nonprofit Mastery Design Collaborative, supporting hundreds of schools in designing personalized learning models tailored to the needs and interests of students.
Encouraged by 50% user growth and 5-star ratings for Cloud9 Training Grounds over the last 3 months, Samir’s arrival to Cloud9 could not come at a better time as we look to expand access to quality youth development in Esports. As more families around the globe embrace their child’s love for competitive gaming, resources such as C9TG will ensure the next generation of gamers develop both the in-game skills needed to compete, and the mindsets that contribute to a healthier and more collaborative Esports community as a whole.
“As the youth esports movement continues to evolve, the knowledge of experts like Samir becomes invaluable. His decades of leadership in the education sector are going to elevate Training Grounds across the board and push the whole youth esports ecosystem in the right direction. Thrilled to see what we accomplish together.” —Jack Etienne, Cloud9 CEO & Co-Founder
Upcoming TG Events
TG partners with Positive Coaching Alliance
The Positive Coaching Alliance (PCA) and Cloud9 are thrilled to today announce an exciting new partnership dedicated to growing esports for youth on a national level.
With growth in esports continuing to accelerate at an incredible rate, the need for qualified coaches is stronger than ever, especially with youth. By combining PCA’s proven research-based methodology and resources with Cloud9’s commitment to youth development through the Training Grounds program, Training Grounds is better able to deliver a positive all-around educational esports experience for all of its players.
PCA and Cloud9 began cultivating these positive environments for esports at the beginning 2021, with the help of Positive Coaching Alliance workshops. Together, PCA and Cloud9 committed to certifying coaches through a joint program of PCA and Cloud9 material, which featured custom scenarios, language, and awareness of the esports experience. We look forward to generating these same efforts on a nationwide scale.
We are also excited to announce that Cloud9 CEO and Co-Founder, Jack Etienne, will join PCA’s world-class National Advisory Board alongside a number of other renowned sports leaders. Alongside his wealth of esports knowledge, Jack will help increase awareness and shed light on how esports can best be utilized to create a positive sports culture and environment for youth.
About Training Grounds
Cloud9 is one of the world’s premier esports organizations. Founded in 2013 and named Esports Organization of the Year in 2019, Cloud9 has won championships in such games as League of Legends, Fortnite, Overwatch, Rainbow Six Siege, and Valorant.
With a focus on performance driven by hard work, commitment, wellness, and a love of the game, Cloud9 stands apart in esports as an organization devoted not just to winning, but to helping people unlock their best selves.
We believe the same skills that lead to success in competitive gaming – like teamwork, collaboration, effective communication, and staying connected to the fun of competitive play – also lead to success in life. These values drive our work with our professional athletes. With Training Grounds, Cloud9 is bringing the same experience to young esports competitors and gaming enthusiasts.