Christine is the Project Officer for UTS Pasifika Programs, where she’s been serving for the past year. Her primary role is to support the ongoing implementation of transition activities, programs and services developed by the UTS Centre for Social Justice and Inclusion for Pasifika students. The programs are designed to support academic preparedness and access to university for target equity groups under-represented in higher education by providing initiatives that increase understanding of careers, degrees, support services, entry schemes and pathways at UTS.
Christine Afoa, Secretary
Immensely proud of her heritage as a Samoan, Christine’s family hails from the idyllic villages of Lalomalava and Lotofagā. The beauty and richness of Pacific Island culture have always been integral to her identity, and she is profoundly grateful for the strong connections she maintains with her ancestral roots.
Christine’s passion also runs deep in her professional life: “I feel privileged to have the opportunity to support and uplift my fellow Pasifika students. Through initiatives like the UTS Pasifika Tautai and the UTS-PPN Pasifika Mentoring Program, I am able to give back to my community and make a meaningful positive impact.”
“Growing up in Bankstown, I know firsthand how important a solid support system is. My family and church played a vital role in my upbringing, and my love for creative writing was nurtured during this time. So it is a great honour for me to work alongside Sweatshop Western Sydney, where I can help amplify the voices of Pasifika storytellers and share their unique perspectives with the world.”
As a first-generation Australian from Western Sydney, Christine is firmly committed to empowering marginalised communities through education. Her belief is that education is a powerful tool for effecting positive change, and she is dedicated to channelling her skills and experiences to make a tangible difference in the lives of those around her.
Reflecting on her hope for Pasifika education is that our stories continue to be raised and experiences treated with respect.
“Pasifika people come with rich histories and deep connections to the land, oceans and skies that can inform and add value to the learnings that have filled our systems.”
Christine’s advice for her fellow Pasifika colleagues is simple but poignant: “the next generation needs you as much as we need our ancestors to guide us - you are standing not just atop great shoulders but with them, wide brown feet and all!”