BY JOHN HOUANIHAU
SOLOMON Islands National University Vice Chancellor’s Professor Transform Aqorau has pleased with the level of ongoing support for the University.
He made the statement when making his first speech as the new SINU vice chancellor at this year’s graduation ceremony held at the Friendship Hall in East Honiara on Friday 5th May.
He told participants that these support comes from some of the country’s organisations as well as from abroad and would cover different areas at the SINU.
The first he make mention of was the Government of the United Kingdom that will support SINU to review the University’s governance, financial, and administrative systems, and processes.
“This year we had the United Kingdom Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, the Rt. Hon. James Cleverly visit the University. I am pleased to report that the Government of the United Kingdom will be supporting us with the review of the University’s governance, financial and administrative systems, and processes,’’ said Professor Aqorau
“Indian Government had contributed to the establishment of a state-of-the-art Centre of Excellence for Information Technology, renovations to the Poitete Forestry School in Kolombangara, and the provision of a Professor of Economics by the Indian Council of Cultural Relations,’’ he said.
He further adds that the Government of Japan has been collaborating very closely with SINU for the establishment of the Fisheries Centre for Excellence (CoE) at the University with satellite centers in the provinces through the Ambassador, His Excellency Miwa Yoshiaki.
“a Memorandum of Agreements was also signed with the Central Bank of Solomon Islands to support research and teaching in economics and banking in the Faculty of Business and Tourism, and the Ministry of Mines and Energy for the establishment of a minerals testing laboratory at the University.
“We have the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), supporting the review of the Bachelor of Agriculture degree the Institute of Solomon Islands Accountants supporting the review of the Bachelor of Accounting Programme,’’ said Professor Aqorau.
He said that SINU is heartened after receiving the support of the Solomon Ports for the purchase of course materials for the newly established Masters in Business Administration Programme (MBA).
He also stated that SINU continue to collaborate with several overseas Universities to build the university’s research portfolio.
“A major proposal is being developed by the Faculty of Nursing, Medicine, and Health Sciences, in conjunction with the University of Queensland that hopefully will see the establishment of a state-of-the-art laboratory to carry out applied research on mosquito-borne diseases, ’said Professor Aqorau.
He adds that SINU is collaborating with the University of Wollongong in Australia for the development of a Graduate Certificate in Fisheries to be offered regionally which would see the ongoing collaboration between the two universities and World Fish to host four Doctorate (PhD) Candidates in the Department of Fisheries Studies.
“In the next week, we will be signing an Agreement with the Oceans University of China to establish a joint Master’s degree and also the establishment of a China-Pacific Oceans Research Centre at the University,’’ he said.
“I am indeed heartened by these positive developments which fill me with hope and my determination to give my best, for the good of the University, its students, staff, and country, for I fervently believe as Nelson Mandela said, “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” I sincerely believe that investing at this University is the greatest way to contribute towards the economic reform of Solomon Islands,’’ said the SINU Vice-chancellor.
“We would not be where we are today without the efforts of our past, Vice chancellors, and Staff. It would be remiss of me not to acknowledge their contributions to the University, SINU,’’ he recalled.
“They played a vital role in shaping the university into what it is today by providing leadership, guidance, and support to ensure that the university meets its objectives and goals.
“Their efforts have helped to establish a strong academic foundation for the university, which has enabled it to attract students from all over the country. As Franklin D. Roosevelt said, “We cannot always build the future for our youth, but we can build our youth for the future.” Professor Aqorau said.