By Shawna Takaki | Staff Writer

Nikhil Gautam, a second-year student at Kapiʻolani Community College, is studying for a Paralegal degree. He hopes to finish a Law degree at UH Mānoa and one day become an attorney in family law.

“You get to learn what is right and what is wrong,” Gautam said. “You feel more knowledgeable, and you feel strong enough. … Nobody can put you down, nobody can play with you, because you already know the law. That’s one of the reasons I chose Paralegal.”

He moved to Hawaiʻi two years ago from Rajasthan, India. He came after his sister moved here and recommended he also move. A part of his motivation to move here was a greater connection with nature. Gautam enjoys hiking, especially at Olomana Trail and Koko Head. During the pandemic, he worked briefly as a personal trainer back in India.

“The perfect weather gives you a perfect mood,” Gautam said. “You can study, do whatever you like, you can go to the beach, stay connected with the nature.”

A 30-year-old student, Gautam is starting again. He completed a master’s degree in English Literature back in India in 2019.

“I wanted to gain knowledge in the worldwide language that is English,” Gautam said. “It makes you better. … It prepares you for the world.”

His favorite author is the author Geoffrey Chaucer from England, and his favorite book by him is “The Canterbury Tales.”

“His thoughts are completely different from other authors; he wrote about nature, his fantasies, his imaginations,” Gautam said. “He put it into his stories.”

Gautam is currently working at the college’s Human Resources department, which is keeping him connected with the campus and enriching his life as he works for the faculty, staff, and students.

His tattoo, located on his neck, which says “Music Life”, was inked on him in India. He would make songs and collaborate with others to sing at concerts.

“That’s one of the reasons I did English Literature, so I could write my own songs,” said Gautam. “Then I got this tattoo. But now I regret it, I don’t want it anymore. I don’t do music anymore, because I don’t have time. … I’m in a professional life, focused on my education, job, and getting good money.”

Gautam has a YouTube channel where he posts his music.

“In the future, definitely, I’ll go to the studio, record a good song,” said Gautam.