Meet our student

Kevin Kapeke

Course of study:

‘The connections I made during my studies led me to be selected to attend a prestigious student forum at Chongqing University in China.’

‘My degree is one of a kind in Australia. It is only offered at two universities in the country. It is further regarded as a unique degree bringing together three very pivotal areas of study. It encapsulates what La Trobe stands for –to take a world view. It achieves this as it looks at global contemporary issues, as well as some historical ones, and gives students the opportunity to analyse, explore and immerse themselves in the work of prominent world leaders.

‘The issues that I research and write essays and assignments on are issues that I have had a personal experience with through trips to Canberra, Victorian parliament and meeting with parliamentary members. These experiences and academic research work hand-in-hand and assist each other, therefore making my university experience more holistic.

‘My degree has both influenced and altered my worldview. I believe that a primary goal for La Trobe as a university is to train world leaders. I was definitely not as aware as I am now of the issues that are affecting the world. My International Relations electives, for example, have taught me to critique world organisations that endeavour to promote world peace or end poverty, by recognising and working towards eliminating corruption within these organisations – making them more effective.

‘Within my course, I took a keen interest in the economics of China, a country that I am very passionate about. Within my degree, I took a China in the World elective subject. The connections I made in this subject led me to be selected to attend a prestigious student forum at Chongqing University in China. The forum is offered by La Trobe in conjunction with the Confucius Institute at the Melbourne Campus.

‘Other major interests for me are issues of African development and politics. I was lucky enough to find a very vibrant club – A Look Into African Society (ALIAS), on campus. This year I was asked to be the Vice President of the club and to be a key individual in holding weekly events, including the year’s biggest event – the Africa Day Festival! My interest in politics has also allowed me to become the welfare officer at the La Trobe Student Union, and as for next year, the editor of the La Trobe student magazine – Rabelais.

‘When it comes to clubs and societies, La Trobe does not disappoint, as it has a plethora of them to meet everyone’s taste. I am a member of numerous clubs and societies including – ALIAS of which I am Vice-President and an events coordinator, the La Trobe Christian Union of which I am on the social media committee and the charity Seven Women where I volunteer every Monday to sell products made by disabled women in Nepal.

‘During the semester break I went on a study tour of Nepal with the Seven Women club. The idea was to learn first-hand what the women who make the products we sell at La Trobe have been through. We spent three weeks there learning about what they have been through in their lives, how they overcame abuse and poverty to then empower themselves. Ultimately, the goal was to come back to Australia and spread their message of hope.

‘My course has proved to me that universities are not as rigid as they may seem, there is flexibility to be whoever you want to be or aspire to be. I am doing my level best to seize every opportunity that my degree offers and using that to grow as young man, a future leader and most importantly – to become a barometer for change. I hope to be the voice for the voiceless. I can see myself as a Humanitarian lawyer, employed by the United Nations, entering Australian Politics or returning to Africa to advocate for social justice for people without power.’

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