San Francisco Advantage

Students Explore Gaming and Tech Jobs at San Francisco Companies

by Mary McInerney, USF News

For Megan Baker ’23, spending a day at Ubisoft and Discord was one of the coolest things she’s done at USF.

“It was one of the best days of my entire life,” said Baker, who will graduate in December with a degree in English. “I’m a gamer in my spare time, and I was very excited to go.”

The USF Career Services Center led the student trek to the two companies on Oct. 3. Discord is an online platform popular with people who play video games, and Ubisoft released its latest game, Assassin’s Creed: Mirage, two days after the USF visit. Discord and Ubisoft are 20 minutes from campus.

“It was incredible,” Baker said. “I’m playing Immortals: Fenyx Rising, a Ubisoft game, and I use Discord every day.”

Baker is interested in storytelling in video games. During the Ubisoft panel discussion, she heard from developers about how writers build worlds for Assassin’s Creed. Baker was also interested to learn that a product designer at Discord holds an undergraduate degree in English literature.

Jacqueline Valadez ’24, a media studies major, said she was pleased to learn that the companies aren’t only looking for computer science majors.

“Storytelling is kind of like my jam,” she said. “I have set my sights on the film industry, but I’d like to write for a gaming company.”

Valadez took an old-school approach to networking, handing a scrap of paper with her Gmail address to one of the tour hosts at Discord. “The main advantage of this trek was being able to connect with these people,” she said. “So, I took a chance.”

Valadez, who said she enjoys playing multi-player games and fantasy games, also was interested to learn about the world creation for Assassin’s Creed: Mirage, which is set in ancient Baghdad.

“It was really, really fun,” Valadez said.

This was the first career trek for Valadez and Baker. “Take the leap,” Valadez said, when asked what she would tell other students. “Do something that might not be relevant to your field. Get your name out there.”

Stephanie Belfiore, assistant director of employer relationships at the Career Services Center, agreed. She said there are many benefits to going on a career services trek.

“[Students] hear about all the job opportunities that may be open to them, but they also get to see the different work environments and cultures so they can start to think about what work environment and culture they can see themselves thriving in,” Belfiore said.

The Career Services Center offers different treks each semester that focus on a variety of industries. Find out more.