Kelepi Liava'a

Kelepi Liava'a

3rd-year student, Bachelor of Business in Human Resource Management and Employment Relations with a minor in Marketing
Diploma in Business

He has always been passionate about people, says Kelepi Liava’a who is completing a Bachelor of Business in Human Resource Management and Employment Relations with a minor in Marketing.

“When I left high school, I worked full-time in retail and my favourite part was being able to help customers, sharing the benefits of a product and watching them leave the store with a smile. I chose to study business because I’m passionate about people, and enjoy solving problems for consumers or employees.”

For Kelepi, his university journey started with a Diploma in Business before he moved into the Bachelor of Business he is studying now.

“I felt that I needed an introduction to business, and the diploma gave me a great foundation to then transition into the second year of the Bachelor of Business. I’d recommend this programme to others who would like a broad introduction to business – it will give you an understanding of basic economic principles and helps you build skills to create opportunities for your future. I enjoyed being able to connect with all the students in this programme, and the diploma also taught me about great time management skills and the importance of networking in business.”

Supported to thrive
The diverse and vibrant culture is one of the things Kelepi enjoys the most about studying at AUT.

“I chose AUT because of the diversity that is evident in the university’s activities as well as the gateways they provide to students. AUT has always been a place where students can walk in feeling welcomed and becoming part of a culture that strives for success. AUT has a great track record of preparing students for their future, and the opportunities given to students are evident in the success of past students.”

He has enjoyed the courses in his programme.

“I like that I can use my experience from my work in retail to relate to these concepts and theories. This has also given me the opportunity to be able to work and study in an environment where we all have similar goals. Our lecturers provide real-life examples of companies for us students to evaluate and discuss in groups, which helps us gain the knowledge and confidence to speak about these issues.”

Advice for other students
Expecting to graduate in 2024, Kelepi has some great advice for other students.

“Don’t be afraid to make mistakes because that is the only way we learn. Your experiences are unique because not only do they set you apart from everyone else, but they can also help people in similar situations.”

There is support available if you need it, he adds.

“The biggest challenge I’ve faced at AUT was feeling lonely and detached due to the number of upcoming assignments. Every time I was studying at AUT, there are people wearing teal  R U OK shirts who give students candy as well as words of affirmations. This has encouraged me to stick to the process and remind myself that it will be worth it in the end.”