Assistant Vice-Chancellor at Victoria University of Wellington and former Member of New Zealand Parliament, Luamanuvao Winnie Laban needs no introduction.
Luamanuvao was on island as is one of four overseas members of the National University of Samoa’s Council which included the launch of the Strategic Plan and the first Statistical Digest - 2015.
Speaking about the launch she told the Samoa Observer “The strategic plan has got to be a living document so it evolves and it grows. t’s not set in concrete because as you know, we’re dealing with human beings. It gives it focus and with the data and Statistical Digest, it will complement in terms of providing quantitative and qualitative data and analysis to help us track how we’re going.”
“This will help, I think, the University on clear goals that will complement the country, but more importantly, to do some analysis around data and tracking the progress of our students.”
As the Assistant Vice Chancellor of Victoria University in New Zealand, she brings an interesting perspective to the table.
”When I think back, because I work at the Victoria University in New Zealand, it’s the second largest employer in New Zealand, it’s a large complex organization.
To get planning and get everyone focused you’ve got to really encourage people to work together and collaborate and communicate.”
As a fiercely proud Samoan, she takes pride in the inclusivity Samoa offers.
“What I love about Samoa is the inclusivity. Like with launches like this; everyone’s here.
You get a clear message and everyone gets a copy. Then everyone takes it away and then within the university, they work on making relevant and living,” she said.
“I’m proud of the fact that Samoa was the first country to get independence in the region.
He’s a great leader, the Prime Minister. He has been very visionary; in terms of encouraging the vision for people who wanted independence for Samoa to be self determining.
It’s not easy, trying to balance everyone’s demands with a budget that’s not huge but University is a critical place where we can train future leaders.”