Meet the Team – Nina Kim
Next up in our Meet the Team series featuring awesome people in the Unleash Space team is Nina Kim, our lovely CEO and friendly face to all. Nina is in her second year of a Bachelor of Arts majoring in Communication; she has been involved with Unleash Space since the very beginning, starting out on the Community Team as Events Co-ordinator, and since then has been dedicated to making Unleash Space a welcome place for all.
We asked Nina a couple of questions, and here are her responses below:
Introduce yourself! Also, what’s one interesting fact about you others may not know?
Kia ora Unleashers! I’m Nina and I’ve had the absolute honour this year of being the CEO of the Unleash Space. I love meeting new Unleashers so if you ever see me around the space, please feel free to come up and introduce yourself. I love dogs, poke bowls and have an obsession with skincare products! An interesting fact is that I’ve snorkelled in the seas of New Caledonia and Thailand – both times unexpectedly encountering sharks.
What was your journey like through Unleash Space?
I was inspired to join the student team last year because I instantly loved the energy of the space. It’s energetic, vibrant, welcoming and open. Straight away I applied as a Student Lead and was lucky to become the Events Co-ordinator, helping manage the exciting events and learning the ropes of event management. This year as the CEO, I’ve learnt more than I could have ever imagined and have really challenged myself. Leading a team of 20 students is definitely not easy, but the support and guidance from the Centre for Innovation and Entrepreneurship has helped me learn from every task I do. Every day I learn and develop my personal and professional skills and I feel so blessed to have had this enriching opportunity to grow myself as a leader. I’ve learnt the importance of a great team culture, so I take the responsibility of being a person my team can fully trust. I think it’s allowed me to make strong bonds with my peers, which I am eternally thankful for. I’ve met some of the most amazing and genuine people in this community that will be friends for life.
Have you used Unleash Space for any projects of your own (Create and Maker Space and/or Innovation Hub)?
Yes, I’ve been using the Innovation Hub to work on my own startup, and can’t wait to have some fun prototyping in the Create and Maker Space!
What would an ideal Unleash Space look like to you?
My ideal Unleash Space would be a bigger version of what it is today. I love how the space is constantly buzzing with energy, innovative ideas and creativity. Giving everyone the opportunity to “Unleash their Potential”.
Any funny stories from Unleash Space or the Unleash Team?
Definitely the time we all had a team meeting for the Coffee and Muffin Tours, where we had to role play talking points to practise our welcomes for the event. None of us could fight off the giggles!
What do you plan to do in the future?
In terms of Unleash Space, next year I’ll be stepping into the Chairperson role of the Unleash Space Student Lead Team and mentoring the new CEO and student leads. I don’t yet know what I want to do once my studies end, but I know I want to keep challenging myself by trying new things that motivate me to continuously learn and grow.
In 40 words or less, describe what innovation and entrepreneurship means to you.
To me, it’s the ability to create our own future. Do what we enjoy and have the freedom of creating something which started as a simple idea and use your skills to grow it. I think that’s pure magic.
Anything else you’d like to add?
Thank you to my team for all you do and for doing so with such compassion, integrity and love. You guys are absolute superstars.
Testimonials from the Unleash Space Team:
‘Google tells me that a “testimonial” is “a formal statement testifying to someone’s character and qualifications”, but I honestly have no idea how to describe Nina’s amazing character with mere words. From the beginning when Nina talked about the long-term significance of Unleash Space during her interview, to creating extremely well thought out plans for events when she was in the Community Team, to being at the helm of Unleash Space, her dedication shows her foresight, diligence, and leadership qualities. Most importantly, when things get rough, she keeps us inspired through either her heartwarming laugh or by encouraging us to talk about what inspires us during the Leads’ Meeting. Thank you, Nina, for being an inspiration to us all’.
– Ping Huang, Community Team Co-Lead 2018
‘I first met Nina while both of us were waiting for some help on a rather hazy assignment. In the single hour we spent talking to each other, it seemed as if only a memory lapse prevented me from remembering how we had been friends for a lifetime! I’ve since realised that this is the kind of person Nina is, and only part of the major contribution she makes to Unleash Space. By talking to Nina for even a few minutes, her consideration towards you makes you feel so welcome. She is so genuine, and though she will probably laugh it off if you try bring it up – she’s achieved so much in such a short time that she should be so proud of. Having Nina as the CEO of Unleash Space, I’ve never seen her without a smile; even though what she does is no easy feat. She’s a real fighter that just keeps giving [going the extra mile to bake cookies for us (which were very very tasty)]. She has done an amazing job of representing and embodying the persona that Unleash Space would have hoped to have at its forefront; a passionate but truly humble leader. Thank you Nina! You’ve not only been a superb CEO, but an incredibly bright gem Unleash Space has been so lucky to… un-earth! – oh dear.’
– Ariel Dannenbring, Creative Technologist 2018
‘Nina is a walking ball of sunshine. I couldn’t be more proud to have her as our CEO this year. Always having someone there through all the good and the bad times, with a hug, good advice, and your best interests at heart, inspires me to be the same for others. While the road leading the Unleash Space team has been a wild and bumpy one, Nina has taught me that challenges can always be overcome with a healthy dose of positivity and an open heart. She is a woman who will definitely go places, inspire many others, and I’m so glad to be able to call her a friend.’
– Mariel Landingin, Marketing Team Co-Lead 2018
‘Nina’s journey as CEO for 2018 has been remarkable to watch. Her tremendous work ethic and genuine passion are so clearly evident in all that she does. Nina’s aura is one of love, humility and warmth, she is the kindest soul with the most infectious enthusiasm. I am in constant awe of her selflessness; she gives her time and effort so generously and goes out of her way to make those around her feel comfortable. Nina has done a phenomenal job at leading our Unleash Space team this past year. Without her, the success we have had would not have been possible. Nina, thank you for being such a wonderful leader, friend and confidante, you are the true embodiment of Unleasher spirit and it has been a treat getting to know you. I wish you all the best in your future endeavours and will miss you dearly.’
– Arya Harilal, Community Team 2018
‘I first met Nina at the at the first community event this year, and from the moment we first talked to each other, I immediately felt her kindness and welcomeness even though I hadn’t joined the team yet. We got into such great conversation that night, just like the many we’d get into in the months to come at Unleash Space. That friendliness and welcomeness of hers, the way she’s always able to see the best in each and every one of us, and the love and care for Unleash Space and everyone in the space is something I really admire in Nina, and makes her not only a great CEO, but an amazing friend as well. I’ve really enjoyed getting to know you Nina, and look forward to continuing to unleash our potentials together!’
– Lisa Zhang, Marketing Team 2018 (Writer)
‘Nina embodies the spirit of Unleash Space and she has done extremely well in furthering the vision of the Space, resulting in a great array of results. She has been a stellar leader from the get-go in her role as programmes and events coordinator, to where she is now, as the CEO of Unleash Space. Her kind, caring and friendly demeanour leads her to be a person who consistently ensures her team members feel valued and we can confidently look to her for assistance or advice. I thank you for all that you have done for us and for Unleash Space. Wishing you all the very best for your future endeavours Nina!’
– Shivneel Prasad, Creative Technologist 2018
‘Whenever I see Nina, she’s always smiling – I don’t even recall a poker face. I remember meeting her for the first time during Re-O Week over muffins at the Space and being amazed at how warm and friendly she was. She exemplifies how every CEO on the planet ever should be like. I won’t forget my interview with her and Marie either… I say interview, but it honestly felt more like just another hangout with old friends! Nina, you’ve been great this year and I’m positive you’ll be just as great (if not greater) as chair next year. 2019’s CEO is going to be one lucky human. I’m chairing for you!’
– Tuaha Mufti, Marketing Team 2018 (Designer)
‘Nina is an amazing captain to the Unleash Space Team Ship, manoeuvring it into the direction of satisfaction and success. She has taken care of us, always checking up on our well being and making sure we are right on our tasks. There were often times where the team was tired, but having a small talk with Nina with her positive and bubbly nature brought smiles to all our faces – and that is how I think a leader should be, with the ability to arouse enthusiasm and energy within their team members, and Nina does just that. There is no doubt she is one of the key members that make working in the Unleash Space team an amazing experience. Thanks Nina for all your efforts, you’re awesome.’
– Dweep Kapadia, Community Team Co-Lead 2018