@LucielVirus, 20 – Funded

“This award fuels my education and journey in the esports scene, and allows me to invest in myself and my journey,” says LucielVirus (she/her), a JBL Quantum Grant winner. Her passion for esports and her drive to succeed as a first-generation student continually motivates her.

What is your dream in gaming and/or esports? 

I would love to become a part of tournament operations and community management at an organization. I currently do tournament organization and I used to do community management, but it’s only part-time. I aspire to have a full-time position in this sector after graduating from college!

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

I will be able to invest more time in tournament operations, looking for new positions and opportunities while putting myself out there (building my resume, networking, and attending events and workshops). This award will allow me to work less at my part-time jobs and focus more on esports.

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

Being selected was an opportunity I could not even fathom — something that only a limited amount of people can achieve. It fuels me to do my best and put my best foot out there.

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

Together, I believe we can work together to build the presence of women in esports. We must push for equality. This means leveraging women to achieving the same jobs and opportunities as their male counterparts, investing money into the talent in the game changers scene, and fighting against gender biases, online harassment, unequal representation, and limited leadership opportunities.

Programs, workshops, networking opportunities, and mentorship all help. It also helps to have people who are established in the industry speaking out about the underrepresentation and taking action to help give women the leverage they need to create an equal playing field.

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

While gaming, I have been harassed because of my identity as a female player. This includes name-calling, insults, players intentionally ruining the game experience, gatekeeping, dismissive comments, and so much more. It really dampens the mood.

While completing my tasks as a tournament organizer, I haven’t faced any blatant harassment, but I did run into the issue where I was being stretched far too thin for my role. I was covering for my coworkers on designated days when we were supposed to be active to answer questions, solve disputes, and so much more.

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

Don’t be scared to try! Also be nice to people; don’t burn bridges. I feel like a lot of people put themselves down before they try. All of the opportunities I’ve been given now are because I started out volunteering in the esports scene. I was able to build my network, and eventually as I got to know more people, I was able to secure my position as a tournament organizer for a collegiate league. Being kind to others can speak volumes. Esport opportunities (in my experience) are often based off of if someone knows someone.

But, all in all, if you don’t try, you’ll miss 100% of the opportunities out there. Don’t be discouraged by rejection either, it happens in everyday life. Think of what you could do to make yourself better, and ask for feedback.

How do you stay motivated and focused on your goals? 

I keep myself organized to be on track of my goals by utilizing Notion. There, I am able to plan everything about my day, my calendar, my budget, my goals, etc.

My motivation comes from my friends, peers, and family. I want to become someone they are proud of, and I want to be able to succeed in life (be happy and financially stable). It comes from being from an immigrant household and being the first generation to go to middle school, high school, and college. Letting my family down would be letting myself down.