Students get Yazaki Kizuna Foundation awards

Twenty National University of Samoa students are the recipients of the Yazaki Kizuna Foundation Scholarship Awards.

The awards were presented to the student recipients at the N.U.S. Aoa Conference Room on Monday in a ceremony witnessed by the President and Vice Chancellor Aiono Professor Alec Ekeroma, the Ambassador of Japan to Samoa Genichi Terasawa, the Yazaki Kizuna Foundation Managing Director Dr. Kitami and the Yazaki Kizuna Foundation Advisor Funefeai Oliva Vaai.

Ambassador Terasawa said human resources play an important role in the smooth progress of development projects. 

He said nation building can only progress when it has human capacity development as well as development funding.

"The Yazaki Kizuna foundation has made great contributions for the development of human resources in Samoa through this scholarship programme," he said.

"I would also like to congratulate the six students who received the scholarship in 2020 and the 14 students receiving the scholarship this year.

"I think that some of the scholarship recipients will succeed in this country or study abroad and succeed overseas in the future."

The first scholarships offered by the foundation were awarded in 2018 with the Ambassador congratulating the student recipients who attended the scholarships award ceremony on Monday.

Speaking on behalf of the university, Aiono said he is grateful for the assistance from a company that has assisted Samoa for many years, while also acknowledging the support of  the Japan government for their continuous assistance.

Aiono then revealed that the N.U.S. will get a new building to house the Faculty of Health Science as well as a large library, thanks to the Government of Japan.

"We are very thankful and grateful to the Government of Japan," he said.

"You are a great friend of Samoa and also a great friend of N.U.S."

Highlighting the role that Yazaki had played in Samoa for 26 years, through the employment of thousands of Samoans, Aiono thanked the chairman for the company’s assistance.

"The value of a scholarship is very high. You might think that it's not much but the thing is that to get a scholarship is something big," Aiono said.

"You didn't just get a scholarship because you applied, no, you got a scholarship because you earned it. You had the right marks. 

“You had the right attitude to your studies and for those with PhD you had the right question and the passion to actually do PhD studies.

"So you are, let's say privileged because you received a scholarship and so with privilege comes responsibility so you need to study hard."

The Vice Chancellor added that some students did not study hard, and came up with excuses on why they did not pass their exams, but the foundation did not extend the scholarship.

"So we don't want that to happen to you, you need to study hard to return the kindness of an organisation in Japan that has paid for your school fees," he said.

Aiono told the Samoa Observer after the ceremony that for the Yazaki Kizuna Foundation scholarship recipients, it would fund the whole year of the programme.

But students who don't pass their subjects the scholarship then undergo a review the following year.

He explained that there are some students that did not pass their papers last year and their chances of securing a scholarship this year have been removed.

Yazaki Kizuna Foundation Advisor, Funefeai told the Samoa Observer on Monday that they are also looking at other ways to help as last year they donated vehicles to Women in Business Development and explained that they are still in talks with other organisations.

The Yazaki Kizuna Foundation was established in 2018 with the goal to provide educational support through scholarships and business support to create employment as well as promote sustainable development in Samoa.

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