The Moment: Today, Microsoft Gaming CEO Phil Spencer Mentored Our Writer/Interns

UPDATE: After our event, Phil wrote on Twitter: “Amazing group smart about the game industry, insightful about trends they are seeing and inquisitive about the impact they can have. I had a great time listening and discussing an industry we all love. Future of our industry is in good hands.

By Harold Goldberg

Earlier today, Microsoft Gaming CEO Phil Spencer mentored the New York Videogame Critics Circle’s finest writing interns and senior interns at the Microsoft Experience Center in Midtown Manhattan. The event was many months in the making, and the time that Phil spent with our group’s young people was completely salient to students who are just beginning to consider the direction or directions their lives will take after high school and college is complete.

That’s not only because the long time Xbox executive is our most recent New York Game Awards Legend recipient (and one of our interns was literally shaking after meeting him). It’s because Spencer was honest, self-deprecating and offered sage advice when he talked about everything from how to get jobs in the games industry to how to climb the ladder and move forward without losing parts of yourself.

Spencer even suggested that students can contact him if they have questions or potentially need a connection down the line as they begin to search for employment.

He told stories about traveling for the last number of weeks as he reaches out to various games teams after Microsoft’s Activision/Blizzard acquisition. While Phil was ready to go home and stay there for a while after being on the road, his time with the Circle’s interns, some as young as 14, was much appreciated as the students hung on his every word. As it is when Circle Board member Reggie Fils-Aimé mentors our future writers and content creators, these young people will remember the time Phil came to town – for years to come.

We want to thank everyone at Microsoft who helped make this appearance happen for our interns. And all of us in the Circle look forward to the next time Phil meets with our group here in the best city in the world, New York City.

Harold Goldberg is the president and founder of the New York Videogame Critics Circle.

Over 95% of the reviews and essays on are created by our paid student interns and mentors who have taken our classes. Donations help support our incredible student writers.

Leave a Reply