It was fascinating to read the argument by Felicia K in the article "is silence truly golden?" Her argument interestingly was targeted at policy makers and administrators on what she feels is the right path to move forward in dealing with the situation of student protest in SICHE. Well it so happens that she also placed a few quotes and remarks that she probably thought would have supported her argument in relation to the protests. However I think she was better off not including them in her piece because some of the remarks or quotes she used can be used to counter her own case or even question its motives.
For instance and I quote; "Moreover, they value a sense of community; demonstrate strong loyalty to friends and many are disillusioned with materialism." My sister Felicia, by being "disillusioned with materialism", what are you trying to imply? From a neutral perspective and reading from that, some might conclude that those who are protesting are somewhat unrealistic in their demands and are inconsiderate towards what their scholarship is offering.
By the way, disillusionment in any way or form is not a positive connotation to the teaching profession; therefore, I would politely suggest to you to be more careful when using it or when referring to student teachers or whoever is protesting. This is simply because no one in their right mind would allow their children to be taught by someone who has a potential of being disillusioned.
Anyway, correct me if I'm wrong but the scholarship offered by the Government includes fulltime free on-campus housing, free Meals, free library access, books (?) and $700, by free I mean the government is paying for it. Assuming that I'm right and in light of the global economic problems, I think the government is offering a decent scholarship and even if there should be an increase due to the "complexity" of our generation's needs then I think an increase of 1000% is still too much.
Moreover, reading from your article in the section where you stated some studies or what not, done on our generation; I would have to disagree in your argument trying to relate that to us in the Solomons or use it as a validation for your demands. Firstly, you don't know where these studies are done and secondly though unrelated in the context of studies done; we are a nation whose economy is trying to recover from the brink of collapse. It would be ironic if the people who are trained to educate and move us forward are the ones failing to notice the grim state of our economy and see the logic behind the non-compliance of the SIG. In terms of the studies done on our generation, I presume that they are done in the developed world and I don't think I have to tell you this but we are in a 3rd world country, there is a huge gap between our developmental states in terms of economy, lifestyle, social needs and culture.
My basic point here is, only last year there were hundreds of SICHE students, student teachers included, who finished their courses and graduated from that same SIG scholarship which students now are demanding an increase of 1000%. I mean, what has been the "dire" change in the period of 7 months in SICHE or in the Solomons that justifies the 1000% increase in the allowance?
I'm sorry Felicia, I'm not trying to take away from you the hard work that you have put into attaining the scholarship but I just don't see the justification in the demands of your protest. Maybe if it was something more reasonable then I would support your case for I'm also a student and my scholarship has just been devalued by 20% so I think I know what its like. Lastly, I would suggest you and your colleagues not to suspend your scholarships and look for another scholarship because of obvious reasons.
Is silence truly golden? the noise definitely is not!
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this letter are those of Junior Roni and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Solomon Times Online.
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