One on One with Chelsea Kubo

When I met Chelsea in 2011, I was so impressed by what she had accomplished. Chelsea is the co-founder of Her Campus at VCU and served as Editor in Chief for two years. Not only that, but she has also been working for MTV Insights for a few years. The most impressive thing about Chelsea? She is only 21.

Chelsea is my twin because we are both Political Science majors and we are both half-Japanese! Chelsea also has a history with bullying and she agreed to be interviewed by Lady Code to help inspire you and overcome your hardships!

Chelsea_Kubo

Age: 21

Favorite Color: Electric blue, red or emerald

Favorite Book: Black Boy by Richard Wright

Education: Student at Virginia Commonwealth University

Occupation: Works in a special projects group at MTV Insights and a Campus Correspondent for Her Campus VCU

Hobbies: Trying new restaurants, reading, hanging out with my boyfriend and friends, listening to music, drinking tea, traveling, and exploring life in general!

You have done an amazing job establishing yourself as a leader in your community, especially at such a young age! Tell us how you got started: 

Thank you!! I actually started establishing myself as a leader in high school when I was the Virginia Vice President at Large for Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) presiding over 30,000 members in the state. I ran for the position and gained a great deal of valuable experience like proper business etiquette and speaking in front of thousands of people. However that was high school which is a bit of ancient history, but I definitely credit that time period of my life as the beginning of my role as a leader. Since then, I have expanded a great deal and co-founded a chapter of Her Campus at my university. The experience has been incredible and I have developed an amazing network of young women and men while building my resume and gaining valuable professional and life experience. My time as a leader in this community has truly been a reward to my resume (and life!).

Chelsea Kubo

What were some challenges you faced being the co-founder of Her Campus VCU?

Starting an organization with only one partner, Mymy Dinh, was definitely a feat in itself. We had to apply to start the chapter then do all the necessary work to launch it on top of registering the organization at VCU. From there, we had to grow our membership and do our best to publish interesting weekly content and host events and promotions to make VCU’s chapter shine next to other schools. I found many challenges in organizing membership and duties, but we managed to organize everything by forming teams and delegating leaders to different projects and events. I guess the hardest part is being responsible for everything while knowing that I still have to rely on the help of others because it defeats the purpose of the chapter (to serve as a platform for students to gain real-life experience), not to mention it’s generally impossible, for me to do everything myself.

What is your favorite part about being the President and Editor-In-Chief at Her Campus VCU?

I am no longer Editor-In-Chief (I stepped down after two years of holding the position), but my favorite part was hosting weekly (or bi-weekly) editorial meetings and sharing ideas to produce creative content. Right now I am also Co-President and what I love most about this position is being able to reach out to many unique people (like Lisa Opie!) and connecting them to our organization.

From Left: Lisa Opie, Windsor Hanger, Founder of Her Campus, Chelsea Kubo, Allison Hillhouse, Vice President of MTV Insights
From Left: Lisa Opie, Windsor Hanger-Founder of Her Campus, Chelsea Kubo, Allison Hillhouse-Vice President of MTV Insights
Do you have any advice for young, aspiring leaders?

Yes! Always remember being a leader is a position of responsibility! It might seem like leaders are living life on a pedestal, or that we think we’re better than other people, but this couldn’t be farther from the truth. Leaders are responsible for a lot of work and people, on top of the image and future of the group we represent. We’re human just like everyone else! Being in a position of such responsibility isn’t an easy ride no matter how easy we make it seem. My best advice is to always be a leader of your own dreams, and if that means leading other people too, then put your best foot forward because you never know where it will take you (and other people!).

Chelsea Kubo

Tell us about your job with MTV!

I used to work as a trend-spotter for the MTV Insights department where I helped MTV to identify, discuss, and analyze trends on campus and in youth culture. I worked in that group for about a year and half and now I’m in a special projects group!

Chelsea an Harper Yi at the Her Campus Mid-Atlantic Inter-Collegiette Conference at the College of William and Mary.
Chelsea an Harper Yi at the Her Campus Mid-Atlantic Inter-Collegiette Conference at the College of William and Mary.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years from now?

In five years I honestly am not sure where I’ll be! I have some business ideas (in fashion) that require some investment but if I’m not pursuing any entrepreneurial projects then I’d like to work higher level management, marketing, strategy, or public relations at a company I love. The pattern of my professional life tends to be a bit random so I’m not sure where I’ll be!

Recently, you did a project on slut shaming. Tell us about it and why it is important:

Yes, I did a project on slut-shaming in youth culture (particularly on college campuses) for my presentation with the producers at MTV in New York last March. Slut-shaming is an important topic to bring light to because it exposes the oppressive attitude many people have towards women that causes a lot of hardship for the well-being of our gender in society. My project was important because it exposed to MTV how harmful it is to promote slut-shaming in the media because it encourages oppressive and even violent acts against women. The topic is extensive and their are various perspectives and arguments around it, but I don’t want to go too into detail about it in this interview.

Chelsea Kubo

How did you overcome bullying?

When I first started college I did a lot of work on social media to build Her Campus VCU’s online presence. In the process, I noticed that a lot of the people I met at college weren’t very supportive of my work and didn’t respect it at all. I experienced a lot of cyber-bullying. I often noticed how people would publicly sub-tweet my posts or generate negative publicity towards me or my work online. I’ll admit it was really offensive and hard at first, but I overcame it by keeping my head high and focusing on my goals. To ease tension between those people and myself, I would do my best to reach out to them individually to see if it’s possible they could stop their attempts to bring me down (or bullying me), and simply be my friend. If that didn’t work, then I just kept my head high while minding my own business.

Do you have any advice you can offer for our readers who may be bullied?

Be strong and keep your head high! I often prayed to God for strength and the ability to overcome things like bullying (among other obstacles), and I always felt better knowing that I could find protection in God’s plan for me. Prayer has always worked wonders in my life, and it has truly helped me to stand up for myself and my dreams to keep strong on the path God wants me to follow.

Who is your role model and why?

My role model is Victoria Beckham! She actually has the same birthday as me (April 17), which is probably the reason why I have paid so much attention to her throughout the years. I admire how mysterious she can be while still shining as a stunning, fashionable, hard-working, and strong women. In the Spice Girls she was always the quiet one that most people would of probably underestimated as just a pretty face, but throughout the years she has proven that this is farthest from true. Honestly, she’s the only one out of the bunch still making a name for herself! Not to mention David Beckham and her are the leading example of a power couple with four children and individual professional lives. Overall, I admire how independently she shines, and how hard she works, while still standing as a role model as a great and supportive wife and mother.

Keep up with Chelsea! 

Facebook: www.facebook.com/sumi.kubo
Twitter: @chelseakubo or twitter.com/chelseakubo
Instagram: @chelseakubo or instagram.com/chelseakubo

 

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Lisa Opie

Lisa Opie is a graduate of Virginia Commonwealth University and is the founder of Lady Code. Lisa loves to write about fashion, beauty, and travel. She is the creator of Lady Code, Vizcaya Swimwear, and the LadyCode Shop. Lisa is also an on-location host for PageantLIVE. Keep up with Lisa on Instagram: @Lisa_Opie

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