Nicole H

I left school as soon as I was legally allowed to, but had mentally left long before then. With no formal qualification I found myself working in an entry level position at TVNZ. With no experience in the television industry and two young children, I started volunteering to do jobs for free. This allowed me to observe and learn about production, eventually leading me to learn my trade as a television producer at one of the countries most successful production companies. I remember feeling like I didn’t belong and that’s because I didn’t. I was the only person who didn’t go to university, one of only three Māori and the only person in my twenties with kids, but I stuck it out for seven years and learnt from the best. Then with the support of my family and a couple of mentors I stepped out on my own and opened my own production company here in south Auckland. This was the scariest thing I’ve ever done, but this is where I am from, this is where I am comfortable, so naturally this is where i want to be. I drive past the street I grew up on everyday to get to my offices – so everyday I literally drive past my past to get to my future, and I love that!

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