As another semester begins the International Office welcomes 96 new International students and 389 of continuing International students to USP.
While most are enrolled in programmes at the Laucala campus (Suva, Fiji) there are International students at the regional campuses in Samoa, Cook Islands, Marshall Islands, Nauru, Solomon Islands, Tokelau, Tonga and Vanuatu.
During the orientation week programmes the new International students attended an information session to orient them with the USP life and the Pacific culture. Later they attended a campus tour by International Office volunteers. They were hosted to a local lunch followed by a cocktail evening.
During the evening reception ceremony the new students attended a traditional kava ceremony followed by Pacific dances performed by VOU Dance group and were entertained by leading local band RAKO as they sang a combination of Pacific and pop songs.
The cocktail reception was attended by the Acting Vice Chancellor Professor Derrick Armstrong, Deputy Vice Chancellor Learning Teaching and Student Services Professor Richard Coll, Acting High Commissioner from the Australian High Commission, Ms. Amy Crago, the High Commissioner from the New Zealand High Commission His Excellency Mr. Johnathan Curr, The Ambassador from the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China His Excellency Mr. Qian Bo and he was accompanied by his First Secretary Mr. Botao and representative from the Fiji Revenue and Customs Service Ms. Nicole Manuel. The evening was also attended by the Group Manager Campus Life Mr. Glenn Pope who was accompanied by representatives from his department which are key support services for our students including the Counselling centre and the Disability resource centre, the Manager for Halls of residence Ms. Dorothy Browne, representative from the Commercial division Ms. Sekove, Project Manager for the USP 50th Anniversary Mr. Peter Stewart, Representative from Pacific TAFE Mr. Brad Carte, representative from the Student Administrative Services (SAS) Mr. Timothy Tuivaga.
After information sessions, welcome reception and registrations the International Office team took the new students for a village excursion to Qauia Village where they were greeted with songs and music followed by a sevusevu or traditional welcome with a kava ceremony and traditional Fijian breakfast. The village excursion concluded with sigi drigi (song and dance) and the team headed off to Up Rising in Pacific Harbour for team building and picnic. This gave the new students and staff an opportunity to bond in teams and compete in friendly mini games including 3 legged race, sack race, tug of war and egg-spoon race. After lunch everyone enjoyed a friendly game of touch-rugby and relaxing by the beach before heading back to Suva.
We wish all the new students all the best for this semester and look forward towards our other upcoming activities and cultural exchanges.