Chaminade student perseveres in course overload

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Photo courtesy of Alofamoni Laumoli

After almost 15 weeks of an overload of 28 credits, Alofamoni Laumoli is ready to turn the tassel.

A 21-hour course load would require at least 60 hours of curriculum related work with a slight chance of caffeine overdose and lack of sleep.

Alofamoni Laumoli, a 22-year-old senior at Chaminade University, has taken on even more. She’s tackling 28 credits, determined to make this her last semester at CUH.

Laumoli is a transfer student from Northern Arizona University and started Chaminade fall 2012 majoring in Sociology. Laumoli endures all 7 of her upper divisions and sociology major courses in Chaminade and takes 2 of her general education courses at Kapiolani Community College.

With ambition to complete all requirements, Laumoli accepted the challenge to graduate by December 2014.

“I could’ve waited another semester,” said Laumoli. “But I was willing to go through the stress and pressure to make sure I give my parents the only thing they’ve always asked and prayed for: academic success.”

Laumoli went through a very discouraging phase in her life taking a lot of energy and effort to get back on top of things. Having family problems all the time affected her in so many ways making her education the least of her worries. Although it stills wounds, Laumoli is thankful for the incredible insights and growth she has gained through, what were most definitely her darkest hours.

“I started college in 2010, so of course my parents expected me to be out of college by May 2014,” Laumoli said. “I hit rock bottom at some point of my college career which made it impossible for me to graduate on time.”

Being a big disappointment to her parents who had high hopes for her was a wake-up call.

Laumoli lives in Makakilo, which is 51 minutes away from school on lucky days and 2 long dreadful hours in traffic. Living far has disciplined her mentally, waking up at the crack of dawn to beat traffic to get to school on time.

At the end of all her classes, Laumoli stays back to finish up homework in the Sullivan Library and does not get home until almost 12:00 midnight.

Traveling by car from afar, from school to school, and driving back takes a toll on her expenses, “I spend about $320 a month on gas alone,” said Laumoli.

Laumoli describes herself as family oriented and plays a mother figure to her 5 siblings. School has taken most of her time away from her younger siblings but always tries to make up for lost time during the weekend.

Laumoli admits that she has her shares of mental breakdowns but never once has she re-considered backing out. She confesses how proud she is of herself with how far she has handled 28 credits along with her duties as a big sister when at home.

“It feels rewarding now that the semester is coming to an end.”

Laumoli plans to continue school for her Masters in Social Work at Hawaii Pacific University while searching for a part-time job or internship. One of her main reasons to finish school was to find a long term job to financially support her family especially her younger siblings.