Destiny Carter is a creative (a sketch artist and an actress) and a hard-core gamer. She’s also a senior and first-generation college student majoring in art with a minor in computer science who’s a little bored with what she calls a lack of innovation in the gaming industry.

She wants to see the design and user experience level up and plans to devote her career to just that.

This summer, she’s taking an art class and working at the Women’s Center as a member of “The Squad,” a close-knit group of students that plans events and outreach. She also serves on the e-board of the center’s Women’s History Month Committee.

We spoke with her about her college support system, what she does to tap into her creative side, and how she plans to change the gaming industry.

What inspired you to turn your passion for video games into a career?

I love video games, whether it’s single-player, person versus person, or RPG. I play tons of them and watch Twitch streamers. I want to be a part of building the next generation of video games in whatever way that I can. That’s why I was originally a computer science major with a focus on multimedia computing, but I decided that digital art was more of my path. People talk about the software engineers or the front-end or back-end people, but no one talks about the people who work on how you interact with a video game, website, or app. I’m integrating what I love and what I’m good at.

What do you want to change about video games?

I want to use design to make video games feel more seamless and intuitive to play in terms of navigating menus and customization. I want to make games feel better to click through and less frustrating. It’s all the same fonts, the same basic formula. As a designer, I would be bolder and lean into the concepts that we’re trying to portray and not the simple formula that everyone uses.

There’s not much innovation in video games right now at big companies—they’re all just doing the same thing over and over again. I hope to someday work for an indie video game company or a start-up that’s not afraid to try something new. I don’t mind making a bit less than the designers at big companies if I get to do work that I’m proud of.

What is it like being a member of “The Squad” at the Women’s Center?

The Women’s Center has really helped me. At first, I was a bit shy, but everyone there made me feel so welcome. They’re very empathetic and have supported me through tough times—a support system is so important to be successful in college, especially if you don’t have a good support system at home. I’m the oldest child and have two younger sisters, but at the Women’s Center, it’s like I have a bunch of older sisters and sisters closer to my age. I help run events and outreach, which can impact someone who might not have had that resource before. I was once that student who had nowhere to go after class besides home. That’s why I love the Women’s Center so much.

You’re also a part of CUNYEdge.

I wish I had gotten involved in CUNY EDGE sooner. Monique Ngozi Nri [’21], the CUNY EDGE director at Brooklyn College, inspired me to apply for scholarships. I didn’t think I had anything interesting to write about in the essay, but Monique encouraged me to go for it. So I applied and I got it. I owe a lot of my personal growth to CUNY EDGE. Without it, and the Women’s Center, I think that I would’ve dropped out of school. People pushed me and cheered me on, always helping me figure out what to do, who to talk to, and where to go. Before, I was kind of lost.

You’re taking a summer class. How is that going?

I’m taking ART 2210, which I’ve had a lot of fun in. It has helped me develop my drawing skills. I decided that a summer course couldn’t hurt—it could only help me. I like the fast pace of summer classes because they’re not spread out throughout the whole semester. I like being active on campus in the nice weather.

You sound like a very creative person.

I’ve always been a dreamer. One of my hobbies is acting. I love the rush of getting on stage. I did theater in high school, but now I mostly act in student films. I also read a lot of fantasy and fiction, listen to music, and write. I’m happier now that I’ve leaned into the creative side of me.