14:39 PM

Best Friends George Fakes & Jahmill Akhtar Excel at UST Esports

Best friends George Fakes and Jahmill AkhtarBest friends since they were 3 years old, George Fakes and Jahmill Akhtar now attend University of St. Thomas, and both are studying biology with minors in business. Fakes plans to go to medical school upon graduation, and Akhtar wants to become a dentist.

In addition to pursuing similar academic degrees, the friends who are esports gamers, serve in leadership roles for UST’s newly founded esports club and varsity team, which started competing in fall 2021. Fakes is the president of the campus esports club and the Overwatch team captain, and Akhtar is vice president of the esports club and competes on the Overwatch team.

“Both of these esports club positions require intensive leadership, which we are learning here at UST,” Fakes said. “We are having a blast working with our amazing teammates as an official team recognized by the University.”

Gaming Enthusiasts Since Grade School

Growing up in Spring, Texas, the friends lived in the same neighborhood, which allowed after-school playdates. In elementary school, both started their gaming careers and fell in love with the virtual world known as Webkinz.

“Our enjoyment of the online gaming atmosphere catalyzed us to move to more mainstream games like Minecraft and some first-person shooter games!” Fakes said. 

Fakes and Akhtar competed in esports before college by founding their district's esports organization. “We both competed on Klein Cain High School's Overwatch team and even placed top eight in the nation at High School Esports League (HSEL),” Fakes said.

Helping to Build UST’s Esports Team Program

The friends decided on UST because their siblings attended the University. “Before attending, we heard rumors of UST forming an esports organization,” Fakes said. “Once we became freshman, we saw an infographic from the Assistant Director and Coach of Esports, Justin Pelt, announcing the esports try-outs, so we reached out to him and have worked hard to create the esports club organization that is here today.”

Though esports is galvanizing for the pair, Akhtar comments that they would have attended St. Thomas even if there weren’t an esports team, because the school academic programs fit their career plans. “Having a competitive esports team was an added bonus!” he said. “It rocks that we could continue our journey together from high school to college and help build one of the biggest organizations on campus.”

Coming to College with a Friend is Fun

Fakes says it is lots of fun to come to a new environment with all its challenges and already know someone so well. The friends help each other overcome challenges together.

Though the two are currently taking their classes online due to the pandemic, Fakes says, “We definitely hope to room together in the Guinan Residence Hall in the future.

Follow Esports Club or Team

For more information about how you can be a part of the esports club or team, make sure to follow their instagram @USTEsports.