By Will Hester, CS MEng '15

What were you doing before Cornell Tech?
Before Cornell Tech, I was pursuing degrees in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from The University of Texas at Austin. After graduating in May 2014, I spent two months traveling around Europe and Asia before moving to NYC and starting my time at Cornell Tech.

Why did you decide to come to Cornell Tech?
Coming out of undergrad, I was looking for a program with a business curriculum in addition to continuing my computer science education at an advanced level. However, I didn't want to spend the time getting dual MBA and CS degrees, so the Cornell Tech MEng program presented a perfect opportunity to simultaneously further my education in computer science and business in just a single year.

As someone looking to work at startups and someday start my own business, the fast-paced, entrepreneurial slant across the entire curriculum was a huge bonus for me. When I discovered Cornell Tech, I felt, end-to-end, the school was tailored to exactly what I was looking for in a graduate program.

What have you been doing since graduating from Cornell Tech?
Since graduating from Cornell Tech, I've been designing, building and maintaining software on the Games Team at DraftKings, a Boston-based fantasy sports startup. Some of my recent projects include developing League of Legends as a Daily Fantasy Sport and upgrading our soccer product to be more familiar to our impending UK users.

How did your time at Cornell Tech prepare you for your career?
Cornell Tech prepared me tremendously in having an impact on a startup that grew from under 200 employees to more than 300 in my first few months with the company. Cornell Tech instilled a sense of urgency and bias toward action in me that has been invaluable as a software engineer at DraftKings. Further, the collaboration we had as CS students with the MBAs during my time at Cornell Tech gave me the confidence to effectively advise my non-technical colleagues on technical subjects.

What is something interesting people may be surprised to learn about you?
Before working at DraftKings, I once spent most of a day atop the 126,000-person leaderboard in a DraftKings PGA tournament with a $1,000,000 first prize. I eventually finished 267th.