USP Alumni Network

Morgan Tuimalealiifano

1.What is your home country?
I was born in Samoa, studied and raised in NZ and Fiji, took further studies in Australia, have taught and traveled extensively in the USP region. I regard all of these countries as home. I have dual citizenship and one day, I hope to be a citizen not just of a country but of the Pacific region.

2.Which country do you currently live in if different from above?
I live between Fiji, Samoa, NZ and Australia.

3.What programme(s) did you graduate in and in which year?
BA in history/management/sociology in 1977, MA in History/Anthropology in 1987 and PhD in History in 1997.

4.What was your most memorable moment as a student?
A growing realization of living within a fantastically rich and vast region, living, stimulated and being embraced daily by the company of people from diverse languages, cultures, religions and watery environments. 

5.Describe your experience while studying at USP.
Extremely rewarding and very very satisfying. In addition to re-discovering its diversity, it was also a place for raising my family. It was where I met my wife of almost 40 years in 2015, and where our five children were nurtured by USPís regional and international ambience. They are much more at home within a multicultural setting that just being in a homogenous society.

6.What was your greatest achievement while studying at USP?
Discovering the healing power of being a teacher. It comes and goes, it is not regulated, no matter how much preparation, it is elusive. But when it strikes, you know when youíve been touched by it, instinctively, and only you will know. It is close to what is meant by the healing power of teaching/learning. Often, very often, it also comes from writing and reading.

7.After graduating from USP, what were some of the highlights of your career?
Gaining a teaching position, being touched by the lives of so many people. Often, there are disappointments with students who have so much potential, many of them, but one learns to get over it quickly and quietly with the passing years, and hope to see them back on track and finding their way.

8.How do you think USP helped you in your career?
By bringing the speculatively diverse people together, to dream of unity and peace for the whole region, as tribes, nations and region.

9.After graduating from USP, what has been your greatest achievement?
Living, teaching, and meeting former class mates, many former students, being awed by their achievements, and having a part in shaping their successes and failures.

10.What inspires you and why? 
The achievements of our ancestors, in settling and colonizing the last remaining region on our planet. Their achievements have been somewhat overshadowed by new arrivals over the last 500 years. But this is changing. Everyone who calls this region home shows positive signs in re-discovering these achievements and being inspired to greater heights.

11.What advice would you give to current and future students of USP?
Know your roots, your past very very well and discover the future through them.

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