U.S.P. Alafua Campus position could be abolished

The position of pro-vice chancellor for the University of the South Pacific Alafua Campus could be abolished, says vice-chancellor Professor Pal Ahluwalia. 

Prof. Pal said there is progress in selecting a pro-vice chancellor but there is also a possibility that there could just be a campus director appointed. 

The position of pro-vice chancellor has been vacant for over a decade, and Mohammed Umar was appointed to take on the role of Campus Director and Head of School since 2007. 

“My team and I are rethinking what is most appropriate for our regional campuses, what the most appropriate governance structure would be,” he said to the Weekend Observer.

“Or there is a very strong possibility that we say that the pro-vice chancellor position does not work for us, and that we try a completely different structure, which might be that we put a very good campus director in place with a good academic record.  

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“There needs to be checks and balances between the school and the campuses, it is not right for the same person to occupy all the positions. 

“So I would be looking at a structure which will give better governance for the campus, and you know these are public resources we are dealing with, and make sure that the resources are adequately protected.”

Prof. Pal said his primary concern is that the students of USP get the best education possible. 

“And we have a lot of plans for this campus, we want to see it flourish, we want our students doing a lot better, and we want to see a lot more programmes coming here.

One of the programmes I am very keen on is to do with marine science, so ultimately our university has very strong ambitions to make sure Samoans are given more opportunity to study in Samoa.

He said the university does not intend to compete with the national university.

“But at the same time we want to make sure that we are providing courses that will be of value to the nation.” 

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