Today we are talking with Kristen from Queensland, one of the twenty-eight talented and inspiring women from all walks of life who are vying for the title of Miss Universe Australia 2020.
In what has certainly been an unpredictable and unprecedented year of ups and downs we’re thrilled to bring you our ninth year of Miss Universe Australia finalist interviews.
So Kristen, why don’t you tell us about yourself?
My name is Kristen Czyszek, and I am best known for my passion for learning Mandarin and living in China. I believe experiencing different cultures in life is incredibly important in becoming an open-minded, empathetic, global citizen. I work in the field of Education where I can help create opportunities for our young people in Australia connect with Asia.
Through these international partnership programs, our students are able to develop their intercultural understanding and Asia capabilities, which is pretty damn special.
I grew up on the Gold Coast so naturally, I feel very connected to water, and struggle in any temperatures below 20 degrees. In my spare time, you are likely to find me under the sun, close to my dogs or volunteering with not-for-profit organisations wherever I can.
My favourite food is dumplings and salt, and vinegar chips and I would feel very happy to consume them every day for eternity.
The Miss Universe Australia program has been on hold since earlier in the year and now making its way towards a virtual final to be held on October 28, What motivated you to enter the Miss Universe Australia Program?
I had been encouraged to enter the Miss Universe Australia program after I was on The Bachelor Australia in 2019.
I never thought I would ever be a woman suited to such a thing as had no experience as a model or with pageants. However, after doing my research, I had come to realise it wasn’t a pageant at all – but an incredible personal development program that brings like-minded, powerful woman together.
This year has been like no other, how have you been coping so far and what’s been the biggest challenge and positive that has come out of it all?
This year has been very challenging, although as they say, with any challenge presents an opportunity to grow. My priorities have often centred around career progress and travel, moving at a fast pace and making progress in those areas of my life. 2020 has forced a lot of that to take a step back in my priorities, which has created space for introspection and more in-depth personal development, especially with the journey of Miss Universe pushing that self-discovery. The biggest positive to come out of this is feeling more connected to family and friends than ever before, and truly appreciate the small things like going out for a meal or exploring Australia’s beautiful places.
With everyone bringing such an individual flair to the competition, what do you think is something that will set you apart from the other contestants?
I’d like to think my individual flair is my insatiable drive to be the change I want to see in others, which manifests through my passion for igniting positive change through multicultural Education and a broadening of young peoples’ horizons. I have taken giant leaps with my own personal passion for Chinese culture and language, and I feel such joy sharing that experience with others and seeing their growth as a result. I would love to leave a legacy in this world where I have been instrumental in improving Australia’s education system, where more resources and support is provided in schools for our students to learn Chinese.
The winner of Miss Universe Australia 2020 will also receive the prestigious Minespec Parts grant worth $20,000 to spend on your Education or business startup, what would you do if you received this grant? And would you say your answer has changed now during the current COVID climate?
If I were to be crowned Miss Universe Australia 2020, I would put this generous grant provided by Minespec Parts towards my business. I hope to be running a successful company that provides an alternative approach to foreign language education within the family home.
My response to this question has not changed during the COVID climate, if anything, I emphasise it more. While our physical borders have closed, we are transitioning into an online world that has no borders at all, and suddenly there are limitless opportunities for our young people to connect with the world—what better way to do so than through speaking another language.
First thing you will do when this pandemic ends?
Place you will hope to travel to next?
Have you taken up a new hobby, skill or learnt a new dish during lockdown?
Yes – I have learned how to cook! Well, as long as there is an easy recipe to follow with each ingredient precisely pre-measured!
Minespec Parts are proud to be the presenting sponsor for Miss Universe Australia, Working to empower and support women not just through the Miss Universe Australia pageant and their $20k education and business grant, but through many platforms with various activities across Australia all furthering and supporting women in the workplace.
Editor and Chief of @gcmag, Currently living by the mantra life is too short for bad coffee.