Connected Conversations | Geena Ho

Hi, I’m Geena Ho, and I’m the face behind Connected Conversations and the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences’social media channels! It’s a bit strange to turn the lens onto myself but I’m also excited to have the opportunity to share a bit about myself with you all. I’m a writer, a storyteller, and a food-lover. I’ve had an absolute ball delivering the Connected Conversations series and have met some really amazing people, and I hope you’ve all enjoyed it so far.

Geena Ho

Please tell us your name and a little bit about yourself. 

Hi, I’m Geena—the Digital and Social Media Officer in the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences. Essentially, what that means is I look after all of the faculty’s social media accounts across FacebookInstagramLinkedIn and YouTube. I also help manage our website and occasionally get to go out and about on some fun photo and video shoots. I’m also the face behind the Connected Conversations project! I’ve been in this role now for about a year and a half and it’s been great getting to know the University of Adelaide and its awesome staff and students.

I would definitely say I’m still at the beginnings of my working life. I completed my undergraduate studies in 2019 but only got to graduate at the end of 2020 (thanks to COVID!). To get a head-start, I began working full-time through my final semester of uni and, while I had an absolutely non-existent social life for six months, I definitely do not regret challenging myself this way as it gave me invaluable experience.

I'll be moving onto a new role at the University soon so I’m not quite sure what's next for me yet, but I believe everything happens for a reason. I’m excited to see where I end up one day.

What has been your journey to get where you are today? 

I’ve always been very indecisive and like to try lots of different things. When I was in high school, I enjoyed everything from English, languages and art, to science and maths (basically everything except PE!) but I never knew where I could take those interests career-wise. In Year 12, I thought I wanted to be an English teacher, which put me on the path of a Bachelor of Arts (English and Creative Writing) degree. But, in a classic ‘Geena move’—I wanted to keep my options open, so I added a Bachelor of Journalism and Professional Writing to make a double degree. 

During uni, I was surrounded by amazing people—now some of my closest friends—who were super passionate about journalism and I found that I just… wasn’t. I knew I never wanted to be a traditional journalist and felt more disconnected from my former aspirations of teaching as the years went on. I just knew I liked writing and sharing stories. 

Eventually, I was lucky enough to be given some great opportunities to intern in my university’s marketing team, which sparked my interest in marketing and communications. I think I always had a very close-minded view of what ‘marketing’ was but now, more than three years later, I feel a strong sense of passion for content creation marketing and I hope I’ve started on the path of a long and exciting career.

What do you love most about working at the University of Adelaide? 

I love working at the North Terrace campus as there’s always hustle and bustle going on, with the University’s beautiful backdrop. I’m also fortunate enough to work in a great team, which doesn’t make it hard to get up in the mornings and come to work!

Where’s your favourite spot on campus? 

I quite like the UniBar and Cloisters area as there is always a great vibe there. You can choose to sit inside or outside and you get a nice view of Victoria Drive and the River Torrens as well. I am a frequent visitor of this spot (particularly on $10 Pizza Wednesdays)!

Geena Ho

Have you ever had a life-changing experience?

I’d say the biggest life-changing experience for me happened pretty young. My parents decided to immigrate to Australia from Taiwan when I was two years old and I spent the first half of my childhood in Sydney before moving to Adelaide. I’ve been back to Taiwan a few times since moving to Australia—most recently in 2019—and, while I absolutely love the country and culture I come from, I can’t imagine what my life would have been like if I grew up in Taiwan instead of Australia. 

When COVID-19 gets under control a bit more, I’m hoping to visit my extended family again in Taiwan and maybe stay for a bit longer to try and improve my Chinese. I’m fluent in listening and speaking, as my parents made me and my sister speak Mandarin at home, but my reading and writing could definitely use some work! I’ve been trying to do some self-study to improve my skills but it’s hard when I’m not in that environment every day. I hope to apply myself more in the near future to hone these skills. It’s a bit hard to claim you’re fluent in a language when you can’t fully read or write it!

What’s something most people don’t know about you?

Most people at work probably don’t know that I used to work in the wedding and hospitality industry! I needed a part-time job while I was studying and managed to get a gig as a waitress at a popular local function centre. Throughout uni, I worked my way up to functions supervisor, hotel receptionist, and restaurant supervisor—all at the same business. I suddenly found that, on any given weekend, I’d be running wedding receptions, the hotel front desk, or the hotel restaurant, and having to tell a team of staff what to do—at 19 years old! It was a strange and challenging time in my life but I don’t regret it one bit. I left that job with a newfound appreciation for service workers, a very full stomach, and a long list of songs that I never want to play at my own wedding.

What are your top café/restaurant recommendations around Adelaide?

I’m a real sucker for Italian food and anything cheese-related is a go-to for me! My list of favourite restaurants in Adelaide is always growing but, right now, I like Antica Pizzeria, Godi La Vita, and Osteria Oggi. I can never go past arancini balls and both these restaurants kill the arancini game, so that’s definitely the must-try dish!

I’m also a notorious non-coffee drinker and I always opt for a hot chocolate or chai latte alternative. Levant Eatery on Hindley Street does the BEST chai latte in Adelaide and they also give you a little homemade chocolate biscuit with every hot drink! I’m also a sucker for Belgian hot chocolate from the Lindt Café at Harbour Town, and Holy Addiction in Hub Central.

What kind of difference would you like to make in the world? 

I think every single experience you have in life should be a teaching moment. I’d like to think that, from every experience, I’m either able to teach someone something new or, even better, to learn something myself. I strongly believe that education doesn’t stop with school or university, and I hope that I never stop learning.

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