Samuel Sooupu Nanai

Samuel Sooupu Nanai

Painter
Bachelor of Visual Arts

When it comes to university, it’s important to choose a degree you’re passionate about, says AUT visual arts alumnus Samuel Sooupu Nanai.

“Study something you love doing. University is a big commitment in terms of both time and money, and there’s no point in investing in a programme you won’t enjoy. Choosing a degree you love will make the journey through university easier.”

For Samuel there was never any question when it came to his study options.

“I decided to study visual arts because art is my passion. I grew up artistic and getting a degree in a discipline I genuinely enjoyed was a dream for me. I’ve really enjoyed my university journey.”

Plenty of opportunities
He says he would highly recommend the Bachelor of Visual Arts to others interested in art.

“I would most definitely recommend this degree. It offers a lot of support and opportunities to develop as an artist and showcase your work at places like AUT’s ST Paul St Gallery. Having both practical and theoretical elements to the papers is what made me choose AUT in the first place.”

The inspiring and supportive environment has been one of the highlights of Samuel’s studies.

“By meeting so many new and different people at AUT I’ve learned a lot about myself, and my preferences and dislikes. This really shows in the works I make, which focus on innovating traditional Samoan art. I’ve also really enjoyed all the support from my friends and lecturers.”

Bridging the gap
After completing his degree, Samuel is spending the summer mentoring students new to the university journey.

“The gap between high school and university can be a massive step, but AUT offers plenty of help to connect the two – from orientation to the wide range of student services.”

Balancing act pays off
One of his proudest achievements was being able to graduate without financial worries, Samuel says.

“Saving makes a huge difference. I worked during the summer holidays before I started university, and was able to pay off my first year. I then worked during my first year to pay for the next year and so on. Balancing work with study of course has some challenges but leaving my studies debt free was highly motivating for me.”

His plan now is to take a gap year to work and continue creating art before returning to AUT for further studies.

“Eventually I would love to complete a Graduate Diploma in Secondary Teaching to be qualified to teach art.”

Last updated: 14-Jul-2017 2.37pm

The information on this page was correct at time of publication. For a comprehensive overview of AUT qualifications, please refer to the Academic Calendar.