Tony Chau '21

Name: Tony Chau '21
Residence: Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Degree: M.B.A
Occupation: Esports consultant 

Tony Chau started playing video games as a child and parlayed those talents into esports scholarships to pay for his college education.

“I got into gaming when I was younger with the Nintendo 64 and Gamecube,” said the Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, native. “From there my love for games grew, and I continued playing games all throughout my elementary and teenage years. Even until now, my life is still revolving around games!”

After graduating from Winthrop in May 2021 with a master's degree in business, Chau returned home to Canada. As he looks for a management job, he is using his expertise with League of Legends to coach other players online.

During his two years at Winthrop earning an M.B.A. degree, Chau and his esports teammates won a national championship in his favorite game, League of Legends. In the final round this summer, Winthrop played Chau's former school, Maryville University, to win the collegiate championship.

“The feelings I had that built up after graduating from their school over the two years at Winthrop were all released into that one series that ended it all,” he said. “I have never felt anything amazing like that before in my life, the best way to describe it is euphoric.”

Their team strategy worked. “When game day came, we already knew what we had to do to win the games,” Chau said.

His advice to future teams at Winthrop is to not let the success of the program get to players' heads but rather to focus on what they need to do to stay in tip top condition. This involves continuing to play the game daily, staying very engaged in the conversation of how to improve within the team and going beyond what is expected of them to get better.

Preparation for esports involves going to the gym, eating healthy, maintaining a good sleep schedule, as well as continuously queueing up to play solo, researching new strategies, honing in on the ability to execute strategies, and learning from other people.

Aside from winning in esports, Chau's best memories at Winthrop were being a part of the M.B.A. program and meeting people who lived very different lives from him. “I learned a lot of things from other students and worked on a project I have a fond memory of called United Way and Winthrop.”

“My favorite memory is simply hanging out with the people in the esports program and learning about how everybody got to Winthrop and what their gaming careers were like before,” he said.

At both Winthrop and Maryville, Chau was part of inaugural programs as esports becomes more popular in the United States.

Being at Winthrop felt very fresh for him, and brought him back to the old days when he helped Maryville start up its program as a player. “I hope to see Winthrop grow and become a top contending team in the nation!” he said.

He hopes more people understand that it takes a lot of hard work and dedication just like any physical sport to be good at esports. “It is not as simple as sitting down and playing video games,” he said.