Since moving from Italy to the United States in 2014, Francesco Galletti has proven his dedication to the computer science and video game design fields time and time Again. Only a junior, he has experienced a number of successes, both personally and professionally.
From a young age, Francesco knew he wanted to pursue a career that connected his love for computers with his love for video games.
“My love of game design started when I was seven when my brother was in the hospital with leukemia,” Francesco says. “I used to watch him play video games all the time because I was too young to have a computer. It was kind of our thing, so my parents let me play when he was sick. I realized by playing online with him that I really liked that kind of genre, and that I really wanted to get into this field.”
After speaking with his father, he realized that his home country stood far behind other countries in its research surrounding the computer science world, with the U.S. being at the top.
During his junior year of high school, Francesco made the tough decision to leave his home in Mantua, Italy to complete his senior year in the U.S., then eventually stay to attend college.
In his own words, for each year he has been in the U.S. he has achieved something monumental. “I have a goal to make something remarkable every year,” Francesco says.
During his senior year of high school he directed, acted in and edited an award-winning short film called Claire. After his freshman year at Marist, he completed an internship in video game design for IBM in Cambridge, MA. During his sophomore year, he started an online gaming business called BlueSheep, LLC with fellow international students. This year, he is working towards entering the business into the Mid-Hudson Regional Business Plan Competition.
While Francesco has undoubtedly accomplished many great things in a short amount of time, these endeavors didn’t necessarily come easily to him. If nothing else, the language barrier was enough to overwhelm him during his first days in the U.S. at Fryeburg Academy, a boarding school in Fryeburg, Maine.
“It was really tough for the first three weeks. I didn’t like it because I couldn’t understand anything from anybody,” Francesco explains. “I could say ‘hi how are you,’ but that was it. There were no Italians at the school, so it was tough.”
“Back at home I taught myself English because in Italy you don’t really learn it. It’s kind of like an elective, similarly to how here you would take Spanish or French,” Francesco continues.
The last thing he was going to do was let this setback hinder him from reaching his full potential. He used his love for videogames and technology to help him in a way that called for innovation and persistence.
“I was learning vocabulary through video games and on YouTube watching videos, and it got me setting little goals, and I realized I had to do something,” Francesco recalls.
“Slowly I realized all the good things I didn’t have back home. I was overwhelmed with the opportunities, and with everything I could do.”
After more practice learning English and more time spent at American boarding school, Francesco realized that he was exactly where he was supposed to be. “Slowly I realized all the good things I didn’t have back home. I was overwhelmed with the opportunities, and with everything I could do,” he says.
This realization has allowed Francesco to look ahead into the future to confront the big picture. He plans to continue Bluesheep, LLC, and has high hopes for the company’s success. If the business does not pick up, Francesco is looking into the prospect of getting his Master’s degree in California, which he says is the smartest place to go for his field.
Wherever Francesco ends up in the future, he knows his efforts will not go to waste. “No matter what the result is, I did all of this and I’m proud of the effort I put in. That’s the goal I have and that’s the thing that made me realize I want to be in this field,” Francesco says. “I have a lot of things to keep me going.”