Hard work and faith in God has seen Rochele Sulia Lauata achieve her dream.
Ms Lauata graduated with a Bachelor of Science majoring in Geography and Environmental Science from Auckland University in New Zealand after 3 years of studying.
Rochele is the youngest daughter of Tiaseu Teofilo Lauata and Pioi’s three children. The 22 year old New Zealand born says she is proud of her roots in Lalomauga and Leauva’a.
Speaking to Samoa Global News Ms Lauata said she has pad a passion for Science ever since she was a child.
“I loved being outdoors. I was always intrugued and tried to understand how the world around us functioned. That was also of interest to me and this passion that I have is what led me to completing a Science degree,” she said.
Ms. Lauata wants to use her degree to work in an area that can help Pacific Island youth.
“I want to be Geography teacher because not only do I have the passion for what I studied, but I also have a passion for the youth,” she said
“I understand that suicide and depression rates here in New Zealand are really high, so to teach what I love and also be a positive influence for the youth and help them to a better and brighter
future is my dream.”
Asked about her journey Ms. Lauata said it took a lot of late nights and discipline.
“You are responsible for your own learning and so it really depends on how disciplined you are,” she added.
But that was not the only factor for the young graduate especially as a full time student.
“You are also a daughter or son, a friend, a part time worker, a church member, a team member and so forth but you learn so much about
yourself, the people and the world around you.”
She tells of the struggle to stay positive and fight off the urge to give up..
“The workload was never ending and at times I felt like I was lagging behind all the other students,” she said.
“Especially in collaborative work in labs when students who are gifted academically always knew what they were doing and for me, it just meant
I had to work harder.”
She added that there were times she would wany to take a break and quit.
Rochele says that the thought of her parents working all their lives to make ends meet had made her want to enter the workforce so she could help provide for her family, and let her parents take a break.
“I remember one night after studying all day I thought to myself “I’m done I want to take a break”;
“However, seeing how hard my parents worked to get me to where I am today, I knew I had to keep going and make sure I get to the finish line.”
She added that her parents were definitely her motivation.
“Migrating to New Zealand at a young age, alone and without their families, they faced many challenges and had to endure through many trials,” she said.
“They sacrificed so much so that they could provide for their families back home and they sacrificed even more when my siblings and I were
The aspiring teacher acknowledged the support of her two grandmothers the late Susana Saina (her father’s mother) who passed away a week before her graduation and Savali Fanene (her mother’s mother) for their prayers, as well as her parents.
Rochele says she thanks God for the wisdom and the strength that has helped her to achieve this milestone of her life.