NILESHNI Devi started her working career as a waitress at Mamas Pizza, but the 22-year-old always harboured a secret desire to become a chef.
After being informed by a friend to apply for a scholarship and study at the Australian Pacific Technical College, Ms Devi jumped at the opportunity to pursue her dream job.
And on Friday, the Votualevu lass was proud to be one of 70 people who graduated from the Australian Pacific Technical College in Nadi.
Ms Devi said the hard yards had been done and she was looking forward to venturing into the field.
"I am glad to have joined this program and upskilled myself," she said.
"My parents are very proud and I have got to learn a lot of things through this program, which I hope to utilise fully when I'm out in the field."
The chief guest, Labour Minister Jone Usamate, congratulated the students on their achievements. He also encouraged them to contribute significantly to the nation as skilled workers and not migrate immediately overseas.
"Certainly the graduates today will improve employment prospects and the quality of life for family and friends in the future," he said.
College CEO Denise O'Brien told the graduates they had joined 5700 others who had graduated from similar Australian programs around the world.