@KiindaLiinda, 20 – FUNDED

@KiindaLiinda is an undergraduate student, pursuing her B.S. in Computer Science and Engineering. She has been gaming since before she could even read or write — she even knows four programming languages! When this JBL Quantum Grant winner isn’t studying or gaming, you might find her building PCs (a side gig!), making graphics, mentoring other students, or listening to metal.

What is your dream in gaming and/or esports? 

I want to use gaming for social good and help show the power that gamers have and how we can use it to better the world.

How will this award from the 1,000 Dreams Fund help you reach your goals? 

I am in the process of starting an organization called Socially Good GG in which we raise money through tournaments, streams, and more to give back to communities in need. This grant will help me launch apparel to raise money initially while promoting our organization.

What does being a 1,000 Dreams Fund – JBL Quantum Grant recipient mean to you? 

It means I have the power to change the world. I have something to contribute, and I am able to really prove to people what it means to be a #SociallyGoodGamer. I am very thankful for this opportunity.

Women are underrepresented in gaming and esports. What can we do to change this? 

I’m personally passionate about this. We must push game publishers and developers to help incorporate ways to end harassment. We’ve all dealt with toxic teammates. So many games don’t have methods to report someone for toxic game chat/text chat, and I see people use slurs and other terrible terms all the time. If there are no consequences, people will continue to do this. It will take a lot of work to get to where we want to be, but progress has been made and we’re going to keep pushing until we can be accepted for who we are.

What are some of the challenges you have faced along the way? 

I have dealt with a lot of people not taking me seriously for being a woman in gaming. I’ve been falsely suspended on Twitch once because people in game harassed me for simply being a girl while giving me the same old comments about being a “dishwasher” or how I should “make them a sandwich” and other things — and then spam-reported me, which got me suspended live.

Although it sometimes gets difficult, I know that people watch me for my content and they enjoy it, so I continue to push content out to my community who I consider my friends.

What advice do you have for women who want to work in the gaming or esports industry? 

Aside from being a gamer, I’m also studying computer science and recently completed an internship at Nvidia, so I know multiple facets of careers in gaming. But my advice is simple: Be yourself. Don’t change who you are to feel accepted. Regardless of who or where you are, there will be someone who dislikes you. But you are so much more than what the haters say. You have the power to pursue your dreams in your way. Obstacles will come along the way, but you have the power to overcome them. You are strong. Keep pushing, create a support system, meet new people, and have fun with it. You design your path and journey… enjoy it!

How do you stay motivated and focused on your goals? 

Like most of us, I lose motivation often. What keeps me going is my reason for starting the grind. I constantly remind myself why I’m doing what I’m doing. Keep a little notebook with your goals, but also make sure to include reasons why you want to accomplish them. Have those reasons be your motivation. Whether it’s self-improvement, or making new connections, or building something, you are not doing this without a reason. If obstacles are demotivating you, remind yourself that things take time. Don’t rush the process.