Nathan Waters

Photo Credit: Griffin Smith | Daily Texan Staff

Even before she became a UT student, finance senior Ash Kim established a career as a professional model. Now, in addition to being a full-time student, Kim appears in Neiman Marcus catalogs, Korean Harper’s Bazaar and a number of other publications.

Kim got into modeling at 14 after being prompted by her parents to enter a Kim Dawson model search at NorthPark Center in Dallas. Kim was hesitant, at first, to join the world of modeling because, until that point, she had mostly seen models depicted in the media as catty and snobby.

“A solid 99.99 percent are none of those things,” Kim said. “They’re just normal girls who happen to be very tall and thin, who are trying to make it in this world just like the rest of us.”

After getting signed in Dallas, Kim did mostly commercial work, modeling for catalogs such as JCPenney’s. It wasn’t until her family took a trip to South Korea when she was 18 that Kim got her first peek into the world of high-fashion modeling.

“I went to Korea on a family vacation, [and] my mom found an agency there,” Kim said. “They liked me enough, so we negotiated a deal where I would spend all my summers in college in Korea, and I would study abroad in Korea.”

Many of her most memorable photo shoots have occurred during her vacation time, such as her first shoot for Vogue Korea.

“I was super sick, and, at one point, I had to balance on a rock with high heels,” Kim said. “People were tiptoeing on the rocks around me to touch up my hair and makeup, and they were like, ‘These rocks are really unstable. How are you doing this?’”

Kim’s boyfriend, radio-television-film senior Nathan Waters, said Kim’s academic drive is even more impressive than her success in modeling.

“Modeling is just another piece of the pie,” Waters said. “It’s cool to me that she models, but it’s even cooler to me that she’s really smart, driven and hardworking.”

Early on, Kim decided that modeling is not her ultimate career goal.

“I had to do these interviews with all the top agencies, and they all asked, ‘Where do you see yourself in five years?’” Kim said. “I said, ‘I see myself graduating college,’ and they were like, ‘So why are you here?’”

Kim decided to study finance in order to better understand the business world she became a part of at such a young age. She felt the need to learn how to manage the money she was making through modeling.

“I didn’t just want to stick it in a savings account or try to live paycheck to paycheck,” Kim said. 

After spending more than seven years as a model, Kim will soon have a more behind-the-scenes role in the fashion industry. Next October, she plans to start a full-time job in fashion merchandising for Saks Fifth Avenue. Excited about starting a career that includes both fashion and math, Kim doesn’t plan on modeling for much longer.

“I just kind of plan to [keep modeling] until I have to move up to New York,” Kim said. “Although, if I were asked to do a shoot, I would be happy to do it.”

Despite concerns from several assembly members about the lack of diversity among the appointed Student Government executive board, the assembly voted to confirm all appointed students to their positions Tuesday.

Chris Jordan was confirmed to the chief of staff position by a vote of 26-0-6. Jordan, a finance, English and philosophy junior, said he would make sure to reach out to all student organizations on campus to promote diversity. Jordan has been in Student Government for two-and-a-half years.

“We will be active in making sure we’re at as many meetings as possible,” Jordan said.

SG President Kori Rady said he selected Jordan for the position because of his experience in a variety of organizations.

“It was really impressive how thoroughly he understands every platform point,” Rady said.

Radio-television-film senior Nathan Waters was approved unanimously as communications director by the assembly.

Waters said he plans to update the SG website, create a smartphone application for students and work on PR for the organization. Waters is a new member to SG.

Economics junior Rachel Miller was approved as internal financial director by unanimous consent. Miller has been a Longhorn Legislative Aide, a member of the SG finance committee and the director of alumni relations.

Corporate communications junior Kyle Mason was approved as external financial director by unanimous consent.

Mason said he wants to create a way to hold University-wide representatives and other members in SG accountable. Mason was a University-wide representative from Spring 2013 to Spring 2014.

Government junior Nosa Aimuyo was also approved as administrative director by unanimous consent. Aimuyo said he has been a Longhorn Legislative Aide and a liberal arts representative in SG.

Aimuyo said he hopes to expand the position of administrative director by holding representatives accountable and helping members complete their initiatives.

“In the past, compared to the other executive board positions, the administrative director has been fairly inactive,” Aimuyo said. “Student Government should always be looking to expand and grow.”

Arjun Mocherla, Plan II and public health sophomore, and Kenzie Spaniol, nutritional science junior,were also confirmed as President’s Student Advisory Council, known as PSAC.

“I think that while PSAC does a great job of informing President Powers on the issues, we can do a much better job,” Mocherla said. “I’m hoping that by expanding PSAC’s job description, members can be more productive in bringing issues they want to discuss with President Powers.”