Aspiring sailor tops Wesley College

Wesley College’s top student in Year 13 has aspirations to become a sailor and follow in the footsteps of his uncles who are seafarers.

Technic Tariu – who topped Physics, Mathematics, Computer studies and came second in Samoan studies to claim the overall prize as top student for 2020 – has his eyes set on training to become a sailor.

He is the fourth of seven children of the late Methodist church minister, Reverend Lene Tariu, and his wife Miu Tariu.

Mr. Tariu says his late father, who passed away in 2015, was a big inspiration as he dreamt of the son bringing home trophies from his academic success.

"I was never this good to be honest and it comes as a surprise to me to have stood in this position," he said in an interview. 

"Either I was placed 26th in my class or somewhere in that level. But I remember my father telling me nonstop before he passed away that I was the only one who did not have a trophy in his carport.

"Now that I am able to bring home these (many) trophies for his carport and he's not there anymore. Dad, thank you for the inspiration, I have done it for you, for our family and for that dream you had."

And now Mr Tariu has accomplished the mission for his late father, he is now looking at his original goal and purpose in life of becoming a sailor.

"I have always wanted to become a sailor (maybe) because the majority of my uncles and relatives are sailors and so I aim to become one in the near future if possible," he said.

"If it doesn't go well I will continue my education at the N.U.S. (National University of Samoa) and look for a local job to help with my mother and family."

Amid the coronavirus lockdown period when schools were partially to fully closed this year, the 17-year-old said academic studies were challenging.

However, he said thanks to the hard effort of the teachers and the words of his father – which kept him on track with his studies – it got him this far in life to graduate in flying colours.

"I thank the principal and the staff for their hard working efforts in making sure we have better results, also thank my families for their support throughout this year, rest assure nothing had been easy but with their support as well as God's guidance, I and every other students were able to make it this far," he said. "So from the bottom of our hearts, thank you and God bless."

Wesley College held a prize-giving ceremony for its graduating students at the college’s hall in Faleula on Wednesday with hundreds of students in attendance. 

The Methodist Church President, Rev. Faulalo Leti and his wife led the ceremony to award the graduating students. 

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