Good news for staff and students at The University of the South Pacific (USP) Savaiʻi Centre as the Centre has now been furbished with stable and reliable internet services.
Preliminary Studies student, Hectoreliu Aitulagi said “the internet connectivity has helped me gain better access to the library resources online.”
Rufo Faasavala Siutu Leilua who is doing Foundation Business studies has found that online learning greatly improved with a more reliable internet source.
“I can access the MOODLE page fairly faster than before and this is because the USP Wi-Fi has improved a lot and it is much better for me when studying online,” she added.
Samoa Campus Director, Dr Fanaafi Aiono-Le Tagaloa said, “The internet speed and internet connection will improve the teaching and learning for everybody not only those who are teaching from the Laucala Campus in Fiji but also for those receiving the information here in Samoa and especially at our Savaiʻi Centre.”
“Because our Savai’i Centre does not have the same support services available both in people and equipment compared to our Samoa Campus in Alafua, having a better internet connection in Savai’i will improve everybody’s experience of teaching and learning. I think it will improve USP’s aim to have the same experience of quality education for all students whether you are studying at Savai’i Centre or the Laucala Campus,” Dr Fanaafi added.
“This is also an objective highlighted in our current student plan that ends in 2024. So, if we can give everybody value for their money in the education they receive through something technical like internet speed and ease of uninterrupted service then I think we are doing something very good.”
“ISP Digicel Samoa has been working hard together with our teams at USP to provide reliable and stable internet supply not just to the USP Samoa Campus but now also to our Savaii Centre,” Dr Fanaafi added.
Samoa Campus Computer Technician Alfram Nukuro said, “We now have internet access for our campus in Savai’i Island. Our campus mainly relies on a satellite system to provide staff and students with internet access. This involves installing a dish on campus that will communicate with our satellite dishes in Fiji. This is commonly used in remote islands.”
“One of its advantages is that it can transmit data for miles from island to island or country to country. However, the main disadvantage of using the system is that you will lose signal in any bad weather and that is one of the many issues that we have had in the past and students would lose connection in any bad weather,” he added.
Mr Nukuro said, “We are now blessed that USP in Samoa has been able to expand these services to this island. Now the school can secure a second link to the internet via 4G. This year, it is the first time our students can have more stable and reliable internet access not only via satellite but also on 4G.”
USP Savai’i Centre Library Assistant Tuvale Aiiloilo said, “The student numbers at our Savai’i Centre have continued to improve over the years. From having four to six students a semester now we have more than 20 students studying at USP from this Centre.”
“The upgrade in internet connectivity has come at a great time, as our student numbers continue to grow. Previously, we had slow internet connectivity that would worsen with bad weather, this is now a thing of the past with the reliable, stable internet connectivity we have now,” he added.