Once a USC chemistry undergrad, Matt Plecki took a leave of absence after completing the first semester of his 2010-11 year to devote himself to playing online poker. What happened as a result of that decision is the subject of a great little neontommy.com profile piece by his former classmate Kunal Bambawale.
When the U.S shut down online pokers sites in the spring of 2011, Plecki high-tailed it to Costa Rica. There, he continued to ply his profitable trade:
“School was taking up poker time, which was almost $1,000 a day,” Matt explained. Why would any intelligent, self-motivated 21-year-old want to spend his days in class instead of making $300 an hour doing something he actually enjoyed?
“I was also more motivated in pursuing other interests that USC couldn’t offer—traveling, business opportunities, and trading stocks.” He was also sick of the Spartan college existence. “Living in a frat is loud, not private, and has shitty Internet,” he said. “Sometimes I’d want to sleep after staying up all night but couldn’t. Or I’d have someone bugging me about how online poker is rigged.”
Plecki says he has since taken free online courses from places like Stanford and become involved with fantasy sports start-up draftday.com, run by two fellow successful poker players. Read the full neontommy.com piece here.