Voices of Youth Inspire! "This helped me to grow more independent and flexible in adjusting to new places with new people."
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Your name: Jisu Kim
Your age: 22
Where are you originally from and where do you currently live?
I’m from South Korea and currently live in Bangkok.
According to your business card – what’s your job title?
Consultant – Education, UNICEF Regional Office for East Asia and Pacific.
And how does that compare with what you wanted to do when you were 10 years old?
When I was 10 years old, I had never heard or known anything about the United Nations – surprise!
I wanted to be a teacher and a good mother.
Give us 10 words that describe your typical work day?
Research and data collection for knowledge management purpose on adolescent issues in the region.
In a nutshell, how did you get to where you are right now? Name some of the most important milestones.
In the middle of doing my master’s course, I wanted to gain a work experience and did my internship in UNESCO Bangkok office. At the end of my internship, I was participating in a conference on out-of-school children and alternative education which my unit was organizing. I met a UNICEF person and was offered my current position.
What was the biggest obstacle you had to overcome to get to your current position and how did it help you to grow as a person?
In fact, when I first planned to come to Bangkok for my internship I thought was going to live here for several months. However, after getting a new job in a new organization, I had to live here longer than first expected. I wouldn’t say it was an obstacle, but I had to adapt myself more to the new environment and really settle myself in Bangkok. This helped me to grow more independent and flexible in adjusting to new places with new people.
How important was your choice of degree/field of study at university for what you’re doing now?
In my case, if I had not done my master’s program in Graduate Institute of Peace Studies in South Korea, I would have had less chance to know and come to the UN field. There were many courses on international politics and governance. Many of my university alumni’s’ had done internships in UN agencies and gave me many advice on working in the UN which helped me a lot in choosing and applying for my internship at UNESCO.
What are the top three things someone needs to excel in your field?
Critical thinking and writing.
What do you think is the MOST important thing governments and/or companies can do to help young people get started in their careers?
Provide more internship places for young people which will benefit both the employers and employees.
Some words to youth out there: What advice can you give them when chasing their dream position?
There is not one answer or one way to make your dream position come true. Don’t stick to one direction, instead open your mind. Keep chasing your dream, you’ll get there anyhow.