A CFNN Staff Report

Everyone dreams of getting paid to do something they love. One student here at Cape Fear High School has done exactly that.

Tam Nguyen is a senior in our school. He was a junior at the beginning of this year, but decided to graduate early and get a headstart in his life. 

Tam is a gamer, but not like some people who just say they are gamers. He is a professional gamer.

Tam plays all types of games, mostly on his computer. Some of the games he plays include League of Legends, Overwatch, and CS-GO. Tam streams himself playing these games, and this is where the money starts coming in. 

He began gaming when he was in elementary school. Nguyen moved to America in 2008 at six years old.

“I didn’t really have a lot of friends. So, every time I went home from elementary school, I would play games and find friends online. I couldn’t communicate very well with American people since my English was not that good,” Nguyen said. 

League of Legends is the game Nguyen spends most of his time playing. He enters tournaments that include prizes, and he and his team compete with others around the world.

He wasn’t too good at it when he first started playing, so he wanted to improve his techniques in order to stop his friends from teasing him.

“I started getting better and I improved very fast, and I was better than them (his friends) in about a month,” Nguyen states.

In the tournaments Nguyen has played with famous people in the gaming industry. “I play with multiple famous people. If you’re in the top ranks the games you play, you can only play with those people of equal rank”.

One tournament he won earned his team three-hundred dollars for each member.

He hasn’t been playing with his team lately due to the loads of schoolwork he’s had hanging over him. His decision to graduate early has made his last year at Cape Fear a little more stressful.

He doesn’t have time to practice with his team, so he does most of his gaming solo now. “I never used to do my homework. It wasn’t that hard until I started taking Coach Grates’ class and I realized there’s so many essays you have to write.” Nguyen explained. 

Nguyen has dedicated much of his free time to gaming. On school days he usually spends about six hours gaming if he doesn’t have a ton of homework, but on the weekends he spends up to 13 hours in front of his computer screen.

He’s trained himself to sit in front of a screen for long periods of time without taking breaks to eat or sleep.

Although Nguyen does enjoy making money, it isn’t the entire reason he plays video games. “I play all kinds of games. Sometimes I play for fun with my friends on a game like Minecraft or something” Nguyen said. 

After high school he plans on attending a four-year school to graduate with a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering.

Although he does not intend to pursue his streaming as a career, he is planning on taking it on as a side job to bring in some extra money and have some fun.