Meet the Masters – student Chris Stojkos

Masters student Chris Stojkos has a gaming background and decided to study postgraduate in order to transition into an academic space.
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In this week’s Meet The Masters profile we learn more about Chris’s motivations to return to study.

– student edition –

NAME: Chris Stojkos
CAMPUS: Online


Why did you decide to study the MCI?

I wanted to steer my career towards university-level lecturing and mentoring, and a Master’s degree is fast becoming the best way to achieve that goal

What is your capstone project?

I’m currently conducting research on ‘Women in Esports’, and potential ways of affecting change on the gatekeeping culture that is the status quo of the professional games industry

What are your motivations behind creating the project?

Esports is a fast-growing phenomenon, but it’s still very much a male-dominated ‘boys club’. The pro games industry needs to take a hard look at itself and what direction it’s headed and make more progressive strides towards improving its dated social dynamics

What drew you to work within the creative industries and become a creative practitioner?

I was always imagining ideas for games and stories, but never had the skills to bring life to them. Taking the leap to get out of a career I wasn’t enjoying and following my passion was the best thing I ever did, even if it’s still relatively early days. I’ve still got so much to create!

How does completing the MCI online suit your lifestyle?

The best part about the MCI being online has been the interactions with my peers across all of Australia. They’re kind, interesting, supportive, and I’ve found all of our motivation feeds off of each other. Having that platform to discuss creativity with like-minded peers is a very rewarding and productive time for me.

What are your top three tips for working online?
  1. Take mini-breaks, all the time. Whenever you are lost for what to write next! You accomplish less and inevitably frustrate yourself by not letting yourself leave the computer, staring at the creation waiting for that eureka moment. Write a little, even if it’s just noted to think about, then take a walk around the house and accomplish something menial like cleaning your dishes. You’ll find your work much easier to deal with, and though you spend less total time in front of the computer, that time is made more focused and productive by keeping yourself refreshed. Work smarter, not harder.
  2. Find a local study space. I’ve found that if you look for it, there’s usually space outside of the house that you can utilise for some study time. Be it a library, or dedicated study space for creatives like yourself which will usually host regular meetups, even a coffee shop. Studying online doesn’t mean locking yourself inside at home – you’ll find that giving yourself an outing with the intent of accomplishing some study, from the house where you’re losing your mind, can make for a much more productive day, it’ll help your mental state, and at least contribute to getting yourself past those work-blocks.
  3. Trust your creative process. When you work or study from home, I’ve found there’s a pressure to sit at the computer more; to make up for the productivity you’re missing out on when you’re not at work or attending classes on campus. This is a trap that we place upon ourselves, it’s okay to leave ideas on the side and come back to them later. Both in creativity and in our everyday work lives, we always have an incubation process churning; our subconscious mind solves problems much more effectively than it gets credit for. If a problem is stumping and frustrating you, forcing yourself to keep chipping at it isn’t productive, so leave it be and find something else to be productive with. Your incubation process should do its thing, and when you return to the problem at a later time you’ll see it with a fresh perspective.
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