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How a State Lottery is Creating Tomorrow’s Video Game Developers

You’ve gotta be in it to win it. That was the slogan for the UK’s national lottery, but it’s not exactly true. One state lottery in the US – Michigan – is proving that.


More than $1 billion was given out to schools in 2019 thanks to the Michigan Lottery, money that the school system desperately needs.

And when more is invested in our schools, the students are given a better shot at what they’d like to do. The video game industry is bigger than the film industry, and it’s only going to keep getting bigger. Todays’ well-educated children are going to be tomorrow’s biggest video game developers.

The Michigan Lottery

There are about 1.5m children in Michigan’s K-12 public schools right now. The Michigan Lottery provided about $700 for each student. Players don’t have to pay full price though. There are always deals for the Michigan Lottery if you know where to look.

The important thing is that there is money coming in. As well as schools, the Michigan Lottery also helps out retailers. In fiscal 2019, almost 11,000 Michigan Lottery retailers earned over $287 million in commissions.

This vital money can be used to help provide a better education in schools, which obviously has a knock-on effect for the future of these children.

The Future is Bright

Public lotteries can help everybody, even if it’s unlikely you’ll win.

The interest in becoming a video game developer is sky-high. Children everywhere are dreaming of the day when they can create their own video games – and it’s a much more likely idea than it was 20 or even 10 years ago. The tools have gotten easier, the likes of Minecraft can encourage coding and schools are taking the digital future far more seriously.

Of course, that means that schools have to be able to offer decent equipment to their kids. They need teachers who are able to teach the subject.


Video game designers get to be creative, a trait that lines up well with young gamers. As the industry grows, so does the need for talent, and there’s not necessarily enough talent to meet the growing demand.

A recent survey by the UK Commission for Employment and Skills revealed that half of STEM jobs are hard to fill. The good think about being a video game developer is those skills are transferable.

There’s also the little matter of being relatively well paid. video game development can be a difficult job – a passion if there ever was one – but there is always a fairly decent pay to be had.

Schools are just beginning to take these ideas seriously. The days of learning coding from whatever site comes up on Google aren’t completely gone. But it’s not as daunting either.

With extra funding – like that from the Michigan Lottery – the next wave of video game developers stand a better chance.


It’s not always true that your gambling bucks can change a life, but with the Michigan Lottery it is.

Better funding for schools means better-educated youngsters. That means better leaders in the years to come. And from that, we all benefit.


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blank Mat Growcott has been a long-time member of the gaming press. He's written two books and a web series, and doesn't have nearly enough time to play the games he writes about.

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