U.S.P. Samoa launches journalism programme

The University of South Pacific (U.S.P.) Samoa Campus launches its journalism programme this year, an expansion to the offerings at the newly rebranded campus in Alafua.

Dr. Joeli Veitayaki, the U.S.P. Samoa Campus Director, told the Samoa Observer “it’s such an important industry.”

“It’s such an important industry and we could work together on this. We just need to have a cohort of people who are interested and we can take it up from there and take it to the people in Laucala,” Dr. Veitayaki said when the university officially launched its new name.

In digital flyers being circulated by U.S.P. Samoa this week, the school invites interested students to “become a communications professional.”

“Be a changemaker,” the university states.

U.S.P. Samoa invites students to enroll now “for successful and satisfying careers in various media and communications fields – news outlets, civil society organisations, and corporate sector and government ministries.

The new programme at U.S.P. Samoa is announced as the programme at the National University of Samoa (N.U.S.) is shelved for 2021.

 The programme’s suspension is due to low student enrolment, N.U.S. Vice-Chancellor, Professor Alec Ekeroma said.

The Communications, Media and Journalism Programme was reviewed in 2019 as part of the Faculty of Arts’ external review with recommendations forwarded to the university administration for its consideration.

A restructuring of the programme and recruiting qualified academics were part of the recommendations received.

Meanwhile, some students are struggling through the completion of their studies despite of the obstacles caused by border shutdowns. 

Dr. Veitayaki said a female student who was studying Geographic Information Systems (G.I.S.) in Fiji last semester had to be repatriated home.

The student was told she could not return to Fiji to complete her studies and she was “gutted,” he said.

But she completed the course remotely from her mobile phone.

“Last year one of the students studying in Fiji was repatriated and she was told by the authorities she could not go back to Fiji. They don’t have the G.I.S. courses here,” said Dr. Veitayaki.

“Armed with her mobile phone, she completed the courses and quite successfully....was so determined to complete her G.I.S. studies. That is the kind of push we need. So if you have the numbers, it will be our job to look for the courses. That’s a promise.”

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