University graduates celebrate success

The University of the South Pacific (U.S.P.) Alafua Campus graduated 95 of its students from eight countries around the region, including one from Nigeria yesterday.

Held at the E.F.K.S. Hall in Sogi, families, friends and supporters joined members of the diplomatic corps in congratulating the graduands during the colourful ceremony. 

“This number of graduands would have been higher but because of the fire in the building housing the Student Administrative Services, we are still to verify the records of some students who are eligible to graduate,” said the university’s outgoing Vice-Chancellor, Rajesh Chandra. 

“Fifty-four percent of those graduating today (yesterday) are women, 69 per cent are graduating with undergraduate degrees, 13 percent from Pacific TAFE programmes, 6 percent with professional diplomas, 6 percent with postgraduate diplomas, four students are graduating with masters degrees and 1 percent with graduate certificate.” 

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Professor Chandra congratulated the graduands and told them their qualification will help them, their families and their countries enormously in the future. 

“The enrolment at the Alafua Campus continues to grow and importantly, diversify into non-agriculture areas, especially science and technology. There has been an increase in enrolment since 2010. We expect this upward trajectory to continue into the future, giving this campus a bright future,” Professor Chandra said. 

“The increasing number of agriculture students in recent years shows that more and more students are interested in agriculture not only because of the importance of agriculture to the region, but also due to the quality of oure revised agriculture programme. 

“The Campus has seen record undergraduate and postgraduate enrolments in the agriculture programme in recent years. 

In 2018 there are four PhD students in agriculture, 12 students in Master of Agriculture and 27 students in postgraduate diploma in agriculture.”

Professor Chandra said the School of Agriculture and Food Technology is punching well above its weight relative to other schools of the university in the area of Masters and PhD studies despite its isolation and scarcity of resources.

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