@pierogee, 20 – FUNDED

Being a BroadcastHER Academy winner has opened so many doors for @pierogee. She feels lucky to have the opportunity to make connections with other young women like her in the esports industry!

What is your dream in esports and gaming?

I want to be an event manager in the esports industry — and potentially a streamer.

What does being the BroadcastHER Academy winner, which includes a $1,000 grant and all-expense-paid visit to the HyperX Esports Arena to shadow, mean to you and how will it help you reach your goals?

The grant and equipment from HyperX will push me in the right direction for streaming. I’ve always wanted to do it, but I feared everything that came with it. My PC isn’t exactly the greatest; my webcam is also my only mic; and I just felt like I lacked charisma. With the funds, I can upgrade my equipment and improve so I can stream for my friends and family who have supported me along the way.

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

Normalizing young women in gaming spaces is crucial. Getting involved with the gaming community can be intimidating and overwhelming at a glance, so continuing to create a safe place on Discord for these women to interact and make connections is one of the best ways to change this. Another thing that could help is to start retweeting tweets and sharing posts from women streamers to get their names out there and to support them.

What are you most inspired by when it comes to creating encouraging content for young women in gaming, broadcasting, and esports?

I’m most inspired by my club and seeing clips of women when they play games — when they are absolutely dominating and being encouraged by teammates and viewers. I feel like these clips have been circulating around the web a lot more. Also, seeing women on TikTok post about their new setup or the games they play is lovely and encourages me to want to stream and game more than I already do.

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

I feel like I’ve been very lucky with my current path in the esports industry — and I’m thankful for that. The biggest challenge I’ve faced so far is dealing with sexism in video games from other players. People are quick to jump on women and judge them for being who they are — just because they are female. That can be really discouraging and even make me not want to play games anymore. But I have always powered through, and I always try to stay positive.

One of the other challenges I’ve faced is getting support from loved ones about my current career path. I’ve had a family member doubt my current major in college, and even my career dreams to be an event manager in the esports industry. Although this person says they support me now, their comments always linger.

My last challenge is affording equipment. Computer parts are expensive and so is a lot of the software I need to use like Photoshop and other Adobe products. I was fortunate enough that my boyfriend built me a new PC two summers ago as my last gaming PC was ready to kick the bucket. If I want something new, I have to set money aside as I don’t make much from my current student assistant job.

What advice do you have for women who want to start broadcasting?

Don’t worry about what others think. I catch myself hesitating to get behind the screen and broadcast because I worry about cruel people who just want to ruin my time. There will always be people who are there to support you and who are there to have a good time alongside you. If you do encounter the toxic people, just push them aside and continue to live your life the way you want to — with the people who support you.

How do you stay motivated and focused on your goals?

I always try to remember that, in order to be my best self, I need to stay on top of things to reach my destination in a timely manner. In other words, if I slack, I’m not going to get where I want to be. I am always looking forward to my future — to put all of my hard work and studies to the test. I want to prove that I’m capable of anything and achieve my dreams.