Students studying under the Technical and Vocational Training Programme at the National University of Samoa celebrated sweet success yesterday.
More than 400 graduates received certificates, with some getting diplomas, in front of parents, families and friends who came to witness the special celebration.
Reverend Fa’afetai Meafou Fata, of the Apia Harvest Centre Church, opened the ceremony with a prayer.
Regulator, Unutoa Auelua-Fonoti, was the guest speaker.
“Congratulations to all the graduates today, you have made your parents and families proud." she said. “I feel humble for the opportunity given to me to be the guest speaker and I was one of the many students whose academic life started here."
“Therefore, I would like to announce that [for] next year’s graduation, I will prepare a trophy and an award for the top diploma student in radio and electronics.”
She reminded the graduates that nothing comes easily in life.
“Do not give up easily but proceed with your whole heart."
“Strive for the best in your future endeavours and remember, ‘there’s more than one way of skinning a cat’".
“Life is not meant to be easy, but there is always the best way of doing things – give it your all."
“Indeed there are snags and difficulties [and] challenges and distractions in life that diminish your soul and ambitions, but if you stay true to yourself and keep fighting and pray hard, you’ll reap the best reward you ever wished for.”
Top journalism student Tusiga Peseta Tofiga delivered a speech on behalf of the graduates.
“The challenge for us, the graduating class, is ‘how are we going to use our awards to serve our families, church, villages [and] especially our country’."
“My thoughts are we can use it if we teach our hearts to not be uncertain, because our service is not easy, but it can be done,” he said.
He congratulated the graduates for all their hard work and for making it this far.
“It wasn’t an easy journey, but we made it."
“I leave you with two quotes from some of the most famous people; as [the] Dalai Lama said, ‘when educating the minds of our youths, we must not forget to educate their hearts’ [and as] Frank Lloyd Wright said, ‘you have to go wholeheartedly into anything in order to achieve anything worth having’.”