Name: Arthur Tang, ’18
Degree: BS, Business Administration with a emphasis in Finance/Economics
Position: R&D Game Lead / Game Producer
Company: Riot Games
Industry: Computer Games
Why did you choose this industry and field?
I enjoyed having a ton of ownership and decision making opportunities (Read Extreme Ownership!). I am also a person with a high degree of curiosity. I enjoy learning and working in product management allows me to learn new things every day due to the nature of the job being at the intersection of business, technology, and user experience.
How did you strategize getting your career to where it is today?
Originally, I wanted to work in strategy consulting since it is a career that would allow me to learn a lot about different industries. However, as I gained exposure to the job itself, I realized I was learning quickly, but was not able to see my own recommendations through to fruition. This led me to discover a career opportunity that is now known as product management. It seemed like a job that would allow me to learn but also make decisions that could affect millions of people and truly make an impact on companies as well as users. I spent a lot of my time researching different companies and coming up with recommendations to their apps or websites that would improve their experiences which geared me with some product sense and allowed me to excel at my interviews.
In short, I had my desired career path drawn out early on at Chapman but knew there were exit opportunities from it. Having this mapped out early is immensely helpful.
Do you have any career advice for current students entering the industry in this job market?
Be as curious as possible especially as early on as possible in your university years. You can always change your career path, but it helps a long way to discover your true interests early on so that you can build a great foundation. During my time at Chapman, there were a lot of students interested in investment banking and strategy consulting. If you’re firm on this, then you need to start diving into technical questions or preparing for case interviews. If you’re interested in Product Management, I suggest a lot of product sense prep. No matter what, preparation is the most important and winging interviews can only get you so far. You want to find the right people to help you. In my case, when I was interested in Strategy Consulting, I knew I wanted to join one of the top consulting firms in MBB. I spent a lot of time working with Dean Gilyard prepping for case interviews and I was able to get interviews with BCG. I started a consulting club that was endorsed by Professor Mario Leone and he helped me gain real world experience by doing consulting work for his connections which demonstrates a huge sign of trust.
Finding the right resources to help is invaluable. The job market is tough right now and it favors those who have technical knowledge, have experience, and are willing to learn. Although a business major may not be considered technical, you are able to equip yourself at Chapman with learning SQL, financial modeling, and even programming languages such as R and Python. Although you are still in school, you can gain experience by doing pro-bono work through Chapman University clubs or taking on internships through the connections of the schools.
Most importantly, the best advice that I can give is be persistent. There are many businesses that have tightened their budgets in the past year in terms of hiring. This means that there are less full time roles open but the same number of applicants for these roles if not more due to people losing their jobs. You can be persistent in a few ways:
Apply to many places, and don’t stop your job search until you’re happy with a job offer. If you don’t hear back within a week, follow up. I’ve been in an interview process that ended up taking me 3 months and it could’ve been longer if I wasn’t persistent with follow ups. Stay in touch. You never know who might be able to help out later on with your career. Even if you’re rejected, keep on good terms and catch up with them once in awhile. Be content but never satisfied! You’ve finally landed your full-time job and you’re earning a decent salary! That is awesome and deserves a celebration. However, after 6 months on the job, I’d apply to a few more jobs and keep your interviewing skills intact because you never know what could happen and/or what other exciting roles might open up for you in the future.
How did getting your degree from Chapman set you up for success on your career path?
Chapman has a strong business program. This isn’t because of the academic knowledge you gain about certain things because that is likely the case for all decent universities. Understanding academic concepts only puts you at the bare minimum in competition. However, Chapman has a strong business program because not only do they prepare you for the basic academic needs, they set you up for success through the industry experience from the faculty. Chapman University professors have had tons of personal success in the real world and want to share that with the students. They have connections that many other schools aren’t able to expose you to. You have professors that were senior executives at F500 companies, but you also have professors who started as an analyst and worked their way up. Those experiences and connections aren’t just something you can teach from a book.
Shout out to Dean Gilyard, Professor Leone, Professor Lawandy, Professor Burnham, and Professor Shields for their personal time committed to helping students achieve their goals and ambitions.