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These profiles offer you the opportunity to hear the voices of some of our Pacific students, both past and present.

We believe the stories showcasing some of the Pacific students who have previously studied at the University of Otago will truly serve as inspiration to others. Alongside these stories are the earnest accounts of some current Pacific students, students who are extremely driven, determined and deliver in showcasing academic success. These current students offer words of wisdom to new students and they share with us some of the key things that have led to their positive academic experience thus far.

Current Students

Tevita Vaipuna

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"My favourite thing about medicine is connecting with people about their journeys ... "

Tevita grew up in the region of Taranaki. One of six siblings, he wasn't intending on medicine as an initial career path, however with his love for science he wanted to make a positive difference for people ... read more about Tevita's journey

Bridie Laing

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"My Grandma is a doctor and is definitely an inspiration to me ... "

With strong connections to Rarotonga, the combination of people, enjoyment of science at high school and a particular TV show steered Bridie towards medicine ... read more about Bridie's journey

Adam Faatoese

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"Do the Mahi, Get the Treats! ... "

Born and raised in Dunedin, with a strong Pacific heritage, first-generation NZ-born Pacific Islander ... Adam's direction towards medicine lay with his passion to help his community and specifically Pasifika people ... read more about Adam's journey

Jessica Yuhoi

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"Seeing the benefits that medicine has contributed to patient's lives ... "

Wellington born, Dunedin based Pacific medical student Jessica took part in the 2018-2019 UOW Summer Studentship Programme ... Jessica's favorite subject catapulted her to do something that would help others in the future... read more about Jessica's journey


Naima Khan – Physiotherapist

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"Learning on the job and learning from some of the best physiotherapists around ... "

What started as a tag-along to a friends work experience at the Middlemore Hospital, ended with Naima choosing physiotherapy as her major at the School of Medicine ... read more about Naima's journey

Victoria Dol – House Surgeon

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"I chose to do medicine because it has been a dream of mine since age 9 ... "

To be able to live-out your dream job is always an amazing feeling ... read more about Victoria's journey

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