Dr Rosiana Lagi, (sitting, 4th from left) with officials from the Ministry of Education and staff, parents and students of USP’s Tuvalu Campus.
About 30 new students of The University of the South Pacific attended the Success @ USP programme at its Tuvalu Campus from 19-20th July.
Dr Rosiana Lagi, Tuvalu Campus Director said it was a Success @ USP programme with a difference because for the first time parents and representatives from Tuvalu’s Ministry of Education, USP’s education partner, were also present at the official opening.
Dr Lagi noted that officials from the Ministry of Education were invited not only because they are one of the major funding partners, but students needed to know about the scholarships they are offering and their expectations of scholarship recipients.
“Parents were invited so that they could understand more about education at USP and what they can do to ensure that their children complete their programmes successfully,” she stated.
In officially opening the programme, Dr Lagi welcomed the students and the guests and shared sentiments from Nelson Mandela about the significance of wisely using education as a weapon to change Tuvalu and the world.
Dr Lagi acknowledged the students, parents and stakeholders for attending the two-day programme and for choosing USP Tuvalu Campus to address their educational needs.
She further advised students present at the programme that education at USP Tuvalu Campus can help the students become successful in life and also help them to become effective and responsible members of society.
Ms Victoria Iosia, the Assistant Training Officer from the Ministry of Education talked about the three types of scholarships that students can apply for which are the USP Tuition Waiver Scholarship/ Scheme, SELF Scholarship and Full Pre-Service Scholarship. Ms Victoria focused mainly on the USP Tuition Scholarship and how students can apply for this scheme, conditions and eligibility.
Dr Tufoua Panapa, the Assistant Secretary for Education and a USP Alumni gave words of encouragement to the students, by using the traditional coconut climbing concept - "tolopiki". Tolopiki is the act of climbing a coconut tree by clinging (thighs and arms) to the coconut stem and pushing one’s body to the top of the coconut palm tree.
He encouraged students to use that concept whenever they felt fatigued or on the verge of losing hope.
“An academic journey is not an easy climb - so when we feel fatigue, our feet cannot climb the normal climb (using climbing strings), then we have to use 'tolopiki' to make it to the top. Tolopiki can cause blisters and burns to your arms and thighs but you have to use it in order to reach your goal,” he stressed.
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