A Sure Bet
One of America's growth industries has been those of casinos that are owned by Native American groups. CNN is now reporting that soon it will be possible to get a degree in Tribal Gaming from San Diego State University:
I earned my Master's at San Diego State University. I wonder if they would consider granting me a doctorate in Seven-Card Stud? I know that over the years I've certainly pushed enough tuition money into the center of the poker table.
Last year, casinos run by Indian tribes generated around $21 billion in revenue, including hotels, restaurants and shows, compared with $19.6 billion for Nevada casinos, according to the National Indian Gaming Association.
The Sycuan tribe has donated $5.5 million to start the research institute and degree program focused on tribal gaming at San Diego State University.
The university's new program is expected to start in the fall of 2006 and enroll about 20 students. It will range from technical topics like slot machine operations to the policy complexities faced by the industry.
"Indian gaming is a relatively young industry, and so far it's been run mainly on intuition. I think it is time that we brought some rigor to the management of these facilities," said Steven Penhall, general manager of the Sycuan Resort & Casino, located about 22 miles (35 km) east of San Diego.
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