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Celebrating International Women’s Day

In celebration of International Women’s Day, we are highlighting a few Xbox Ambassadors and gaming industry professionals who are women. Each of these women share why they are proud to be gamers and provide their advice to other women interested in gaming or the industry.  

Catarina Macedo, Program Manager in Xbox R&D, Microsoft 

 

Catarina Macedo sitting on a couch

As a lifetime gamer, it was Catarina’s dream to work in the gaming industry. Now she works at Microsoft as a Program Manager for Xbox Research and Development as well as leads the Women in Gaming effort. This effort strives to inspire young women to pursue careers in gaming and empowering women in the industry. Catarina is a leader and positive force throughout Team Xbox and the gaming community.  

What makes you proud to be a woman in the gaming industry? 

I love that I am able to pave the way for women to get into the gaming industry and find a welcoming, inclusive and fun environment where they can be successful. There has been so much growth in the past few years, and I truly believe that we as an industry are better for it, creating more and better content than ever before, because of the diversity and representation that we are starting to see – which is all due to these amazing and resilient women and allies who have made big efforts on this transformation.”

What advice would you give to gamers who are women that aspire to work in the gaming industry? 

“There are a lot of different ways you can pursue opportunities within the gaming industry nowadays: you can follow a more technical career as a game developer, designer, audio, community management, etc, and there are other less conventional ways that are emerging all the time! Finance, lawyers, business development, content creation, video editing, … Leverage your own passions and expertise.” 

MissDeusGeek, Xbox Ambassador + Xbox MVP, Founder of Attack on Geek and Women of Xbox Twitter 

MissDeusGeek standing in front of an Xbox decorated race car.

MissDeusGeek founded Women of Xbox, a Discord group and Twitter channel aimed to empower gamers who are women, strengthen community ties, and share the love of Xbox together. In addition, she participates in local gaming and tech events, speaks at panels, and works with community groups to promote gaming as a positive and inclusive activityMissDeusGeek exemplifies what it means to be an Xbox Ambassador, Xbox MVP, and leader. 

What makes you proud to be a woman who plays video games? 

I am proud to be a woman who plays video games because it allows me to connect with other women and girls who share in my interests and passions. Too often women and girls feel ashamed to admit that they enjoy gaming or don’t feel comfortable playing games online out of fear of judgement. Seeing many women now take a stand to show that games are for everyone, regardless of gender and level of experience, makes me feel welcome and part of the gaming community. 

What advice would you give young girls who want to start playing video games but don’t know how? 

My advice would be to head to a local Microsoft store or anywhere that has gaming consoles and games available for attendees to play (like a local technology/gaming lounge or gaming arcade). Not only will there be people there who can help get you set up and guide you, but you might even meet other girls like you. Of course, nothing beats learning with your own two hands, and the easiest way to start playing games is to pick up an Xbox One S and a subscription to Xbox Game Pass. This way, you can try variety of different games without having to actually buy each and every one of them. It helps that most games these days have in game tutorials that will teach you what to do, and there are different levels of difficulties to allow you to play at your own pace. 

Christyna64, Xbox Ambassador

Christyna64 standing in front of a white wall.

Christyna64 is an Xbox Ambassador committed to making gaming fun for everyone. She positively interacts with other Xbox Ambassadors and gamers across Twitter and Mixer. In addition to inspiring others in the gaming community, Christyna64 is also an advocate for mental health awareness and LGBTQ issues. 

What makes you proud to be a gamer? 

Being a gamer to me is about the journey we get to take when we start a gameGaming gives us the opportunity to explore in a safe environment with creativity, and self-expression. In games we get to do all this with the ability to hit the reset button to try again in a different way to explore who we are and what we enjoy.  

What advice would you give young girls who want to start playing video games but don’t know how? 

For any young girl who interested in video games I would suggest starting with; what are your current interests. Then I would recommend looking for games based on those interestsTalk to your parents about what you would like to try and ask if that’s something their parents will let them get into. Since we as females have a different experience in an online world, I would ask any parent and young woman to learn about online privacy, safety and how to use the features available in gaming to keep the unwanted interactions at a minimum. 

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