The Regional Campus Directors of The University of the South Pacific (USP) met at the Properties and Facilities conference room in Laucala, Suva on 11 May 2016 to discuss plans for regional campuses.
Discussions also centred on the administrative review of USP’s regional campuses, among others.
While opening the Forum, USP Vice-Chancellor and President Professor Rajesh Chandra said the regional campuses are special opportunities for the University to respond to the needs of each member country.
He said the directors were the eyes and ears of the University in their own countries, and an integral part of the University.
“You have a major role that goes beyond the normal responsibility of representing the University in conveying our quality and values. You also know much more than most of us about what your country expects from the University,” he told them.
He said one of the long standing issues is that of national universities and USP and a solution is to give regional campuses a lot more freedom to respond more specifically to their country needs.
Professor Chandra urged the Campus Directors to listen carefully, articulate from their respective Governments what is needed and to ensure that their voices are heard.
“I give a lot of attention to regional campuses and hopefully matching that with some more resources to ensure that the university projects a very strong regional perspective and delivery,” he emphasised.
Professor Chandra also recorded his appreciation for those attending their last forum and acknowledged their contribution to the University.
Some of the issues brought up by the Campus Directors include:
• Problems with Internet connectivity;
• Urgent need for Wifi connection;
• Need for a bit for autonomy;
• The issue of campus directors teaching and playing an administrative role all at the same time; and
• Urgent need for the appointment of a Campus Director, personal assistant and an accountant for the Solomon Islands campus.
Professor Chandra informed the Campus Directors that these matters would be looked into and assured them of his personal support.
Other issues discussed included updates on the banner revitalisation project for regional campuses, updates from Faculties and other sections of the University including Human Resources structure and improvement, overview of the planning and ground work for this year’s Open Day event, marketing to boost semester two enrollments and revamping the webpages of regional campuses.