Community champion

When Deepak Vinayak first arrived from India it wasn't easy to find work or community support in Australia and he often had to sleep on the platform of a suburban railway station while juggling odd jobs.

After completing a Certificate III at VU through Public Transport Victoria his luck began to change. His current work as a multicultural community champion earned him a 2018 Pride of Australia medal.

Picture by David Caird

Diversity is VU’s strength – and the students, staff and alumni community are embracing it. VU gave me opportunity to meet amazing people and, most importantly, share wonderful stories with people from diverse backgrounds who make VU proud in their respective fields.

Since graduating I’ve been a Multicultural Champion of Victoria, and was nominated for Australian of the Year in 2017. In 2018 I was an Australia Day Ambassador and awarded a Pride of Australia Medal. I’m a believer in the power of youth and have developed formal and informal platforms to encourage young people to work together on issues like social cohesion and multiculturalism. I encourage them to play active leadership roles in their own respective communities.

I am currently working as Station Master and Community Liaison Officer for Metro Trains Melbourne. I am also a Justice of the Peace, making myself available 24-hours a day, 365 days a year to assist our multicultural communities. My next goal is to provide support to the community including new students, immigrants and refugees, and to work as a bridge between public and policy makers.

Course studied:

Certificate III in Transport & Distribution (Rail Operations) (no longer offered)

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