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members of tiffin esports team standing and smiling in the level up game store

Off-Campus Connections – TU Students Get Their Game Faces on with Level Up

By Matthew Early

Tu esports logo in frame on the wall

One of the many perks that comes with attending Tiffin University is that students can find friends and resources in some fairly unexpected places. Why might this be? For starters, there is a big difference between college towns and colleges that become towns of their own, and our school recognizes this. Sometimes, universities are welcomed into their surrounding communities and do the same for residents in turn. Too often though, a lack of outreach and engagement disconnects schools from the places that house them, driving a wedge between the students and residents.

No such divide exists at Tiffin. Here, familiar and friendly faces always greet campus visitors, making it easier for relationships to form. The Dragon Family also goes out of its way to involve the City of Tiffin and those that live here in events and activities. It just so happens that this sometimes creates opportunities for our students that extend beyond campus. It takes a village to graduate a college student, after all! TU’s recent partnership with Level Up, a gaming store in downtown Tiffin is just one such example.

Storeowner Tom Hayes and Jaysen Scherger, manager of the Tiffin location recently announced their new relationship with TU’s esports club. According to Brett Ybarra, Director and Head Coach of Tiffin University Esports, this merger is an opportunity to bring TU students and Tiffin locals closer together through a shared passion for gaming.

“We are extremely excited to partner with Level Up,” said Brett. “We plan to co-host monthly events open to both the community and students alike. It is our hope this will build interest and local support for our teams.”

Jaysen Scherger shares in Brett’s excitement, praising TU for its efforts to help end the stigma surrounding professional gaming.

“I think as more people realize that esports has a huge following and that competitive gaming can be used as an actual source of income, it might silence some naysayers and give people the chance to achieve their dreams. Giving students these opportunities shows that Tiffin University is on the right path with keeping current and offering endless possibilities.”

Jaysen continued by stating how he believes this partnership will be beneficial for both Level Up and TU.

“As for Level Up, this is a huge advertising advantage,” he began. “Not only do we get to partner with such a prestigious University, but students from all over the world come to TU. These young adults will have the opportunity to save a little bit of money while pursuing personal passions and supporting a local business. Everybody wins.”

All Dragon Students can now get an automatic 10% off any used item purchase $49 and under made in-store, and this discount jumps to 20% for any TU student involved with the esports program.

For more information about the Tiffin University Esports program, visit

For more information about TU’s esports management major, visit