The USP SIG sponsored students' plea is genuine. As such, the responsible authorities should take immediate attention to the students' plea. In fact, it is quite absurd to note that students' allowance is inversely proportional to the increase in the cost of living in Fiji. I don't know how SIG do their mathematics but I think it is just not logical to decrease the allowance when what it is purposely for, increases in value. Just recently, I heard that SIG had to borrow a large amount of money from a local business person to pay the teachers' and the police salaries. I think the problem here is that, sometimes government allocated funds are diverted to meet other commitments such as MPs' special grants and/or MPs' other claims etc, the executive's political interests. So, unless SIG minimizes such political self interest, I think we will still face such similar problems in the future.
By the way, I want to comment on the notion that there are some tough courses at USP. This is quite composite since we have the teaching (lecturers), learning (students) and assessment aspects etc. In 1994, the head of school for math and computing put up a notice in the campus stating that Pacific students don't know how to think. That resulted in an open forum and eventually a change to the head of school and review of math units. Still failure rates were reasonably high and SIG still encourage students to undertake such field of study for the benefit of our human resources. However, some students may have their strengths in other fields of study. In fact, there were some students who fail in science programs but do excel in art programs. As such, I think NTU should make proper consultation, counselling and monitoring before and when awarding such program of study to capable students. Finally, though I think that all courses should be treated equally, some courses have strange technical languages and syntaxes that are not part of our everyday encounter. As such, to some, time is needed coupled with discipline, right aptitude and attitude. Thank you editor.
SIG students at USP
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