USP Alumni Network

John Usamate

1.What is your home country?

2.What programme did you graduate in and in which year?  
Bachelor of Arts in Administration and Economic in 1987

3.What was your most memorable moment as a student?
They were all fantastic moments

4.Describe your experience while studying at USP.
Studying at USP was a great experience not only academically but also for the development of great friendships that have lasted my lifetime. Many of my friends became part of my network that has assisted me in my career.

5.What was your greatest achievement while studying at USP?
I canít pinpoint anything in particular, it was all good.

6.After graduating from USP, what were some of the highlights of your career?
I became a Chief Executive Officer of an organisation with a budget of more than $20 million before the age of 40. I was appointed as Director General of the Fiji National Training Council in December 2000 at the age of 38. During my tenure at FNTC, we focused on developing great culture and team spirit, we developed a performance Management system and a focus on our Values. As a result of this, we were able to double our output within 5 years. I served as Minister for labour, Industrial Relations and Employment in Fiji until the elections in Sept 2014 where I have a new post of Minister for Health and Medical Services. Being an MP has given me a great opportunity to provide service to a greater number of people.

7.How do you think USP helped you in your career?
It gave me great learning and great friends and great contacts and a fantastic network. It also developed my social skills through rugby, volleyball, basketball, social events, participating in the USP Students Association( I served as rep of the Fijian Students association), Tovata Students Association( of which I was President) and the then Fijian Students Association.

8.After graduating from USP, what has been your greatest achievement?
Getting married, having children and grandchildren

9.What inspires you and why? 
The idea of service to people. Christ inspires me and those who have lived a life of service.

10.What advice would you give to current and future students of USP?
Focus on academic development but also get involved in other activities. Develop yourself socially. Develop your Emotional and Social Intelligence. IQ and a fantastic GPA does not guarantee success in life.

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