Social Change Maker Profile: Nolan Yu, UM Sydney

Social Change Maker Profile: Nolan Yu, UM Sydney

ICYMI, B&T has recently partnered with UnLtd to bring attention to some game-changing stars in our industry and their respective charity work. Last week, we grabbed Erin Hunter from MKTG Sydney for a quick chat.

And this week, it’s on to Nolan Yu, 26. He’s a partnerships trader at UM Sydney, and he’s pretty damn impressive.

First ever job: VIP Suite waiter at Mercedes-Benz Arena in Shanghai.

If I wasn’t doing my job, I’d be: A blogger/YouTuber.

How I got where I am today: Dream big, work hard, and never let others define you.

Causes I care about: Equality and inclusion.

If you also believe in equality and inclusion in the industry (and really, who doesn’t?) head to B&T‘s Changing the Ratio on May 28 for a day of diversity, inclusion and the promotion of women in Australia’s advertising, marketing and media landscape.

We’ve locked in some killer speakers (including Lisa Wilkinson!) and attendees will walk away with game-changing ideas, practical tools and case studies to take back to their organisations. To be one of those attendees, grab tickets here. Now, back to Nolan. 

The change I’d like to see in the world and why it’s important: People should appreciate diversity more. There are way too many conflicts today around religion, race and cultural differences. Imagine if we lived in a world that all looked the same and we could only eat one type of food… that life would be so dull compared to what we have now.

How did you first get involved with UnLtd: Won a MFA NGen Award last year, which was sponsored by UnLtd.

The charity projects I’m currently working on: Bringing our NGen award-winning idea to life, working with ‘Hear For You’and ‘UnLtd’ to build a secret Minecraft world – League of Hearoes – to connect hard-of-hearing and deaf teens across the country.

Some social issues I’m passionate about are: Workplace diversity (especially in media) and equality (discrimination).

Why I want to give back: As a minority here in Australia, being underestimated on a regular basis has always been a challenge for me, it makes me doubt my capabilities and affects my confidence. I’m a fairly competitive person, so I feel I need to work extra hard to get noticed and prove myself.

However, along my journey in Australia, there are a few people who believe in me regardless of where I am from, who encourage me and offer me advice to help overcome difficulties I faced at uni and in the workplace. Because I wouldn’t go as far without their support, I would love to help other disadvantaged individuals (and hopefully use my own stories to inspire them one day).

The best/most rewarding volunteering experience I’ve had: When I was doing my masters at UNSW, I was involved in a student consulting program to help a social enterprise called Fighting Chance, who offer training and employment opportunities for disabled youth. I met and interviewed some of the youth from the organisation for research purposes. I could genuinely feel their positivity about their future of having a career in a mainstream workplace.

They talked about their work and the Fighting Chance programs with so much pride. It was a truly inspiring and life changing experience, which encouraged me to appreciate what I have in life more, and to always stay positive in challenging situations.

My greatest achievement: Moved to Australia all by myself four years ago, and I’m now getting closer and closer to making my ‘Australian Dream’ come true.

The person/company I’d like to challenge to get involved & why: SBS – they’ve done an epic and truly respectful job in embracing and celebrating cultural diversity. The face of Australia is changing, however Australian television still does not reflect our multicultural society, which is backwards in comparison. I hope SBS will utilise their influence to encourage even more young Australian professionals in media to start the change in the industry.

My advice for someone just starting their career is: Find a mentor who you look up to and who is willing to guide you to reach your career goals.

UnLtd is a social purpose organisation connecting the media, marketing and creative industries with charities helping children and young people at risk. Find out how you can get involved at



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B&T Changing the Ratio 2018 changing the ratio Nolan Yu Social Change Maker um sydney UNLTD

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