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USP’s Buddy of The Year Award recipient shares experience

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Shavnil Singh at Macquarie University in Australia

A final year student of The University of the South Pacific (USP) recently attended a weeklong Orientation programme at Australia’s Macquarie University, as part of his prize for scooping the Westpac Buddy of the Year 2018 award recipient.

USP has a Buddy programme under Campus Life’s First Year Experience Office, which links senior students with first year students to help them with a seamless transition into university life.

Shavnil Singh, who is studying a Bachelor Arts, Graduate Certificate in Education programme with majors in Language and Geography is grateful for the international exposure.

“I am fortunate that USP has these types of programmes to give students opportunities to get international exposure,” Mr Singh said.

“In that one week I was able to compare the university with my home university, and it made me realise that USP offers similar services as those universities overseas,” he said.

“The trip gave me a chance to learn new ideas which will enable me to implement the same in my home university,” an elated Mr Singh said.

He shared that he gained a lot of knowledge about Macquarie University, the facilities and the types & level of courses offered which will assist and guide him and his peers for further studies abroad.

“One thing that we are missing out on is awareness. Over here the only means of sending information is by all staff and student emails where as in Macquarie they have Monitor Screens mounted around the campus showing all the important updates regarding the university,” he said.

“I was delighted to see a lot activities organised for the students during the orientation week such as music, games, entertainment and various service booths for the students. I was able to consult some academic counselors during the orientation week regarding the facilities and different types of courses being offered which showed that there are a lot of opportunities available in terms of further studies abroad,” he added.

“I also realised the importance they place on non-academic assistance for students, especially for first-years. It validated my work as a Buddy and made me realise how important it is to be a volunteer Buddy,” Mr. Singh said.

He also mentioned that after his visit, he was even more motivated to further his studies and continues to encourage other students to keep advancing.

“As a recipient of a special award, the Westpac Buddy of the Year 2018, I believe I have a duty to share my experience with other students and encourage them to volunteer and make the most of what USP has to offer. This award has been such a great motivation for me,” he said.

“I will study hard and aim to grab all the opportunities and climb the ladder to success.  This trip has also boosted my goals of becoming a writer and to share my experience and knowledge with all the students who come to the university with a dream to achieve,” he added.

He acknowledged Westpac and USP’s Campus Life for the opportunity and experience in the Australian university.

This news item was published on 3 Apr 2019 11:08:35 am. For more information or any High-Res Images, please contact us on email

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