University of the South Pacific

University of the South Pacific, NZ govt ink new 10-year deal

The 10-year deal, which will see the Aotearoa contribute $NZ38.5 million to USP's core funding for the first five years, was announced by Deputy Prime Minister Carmel Sepuloni in Suva on Wednesday.

The partnership is expected to support USP's long-term planning and stability as it tries to bounce back from a challenging period after the former Fijian administration cut off its financial contribution to the university.

USP’s Vice Chancellor Pal Ahluwalia receives grand welcome in Fiji

Professor Ahluwalia and his wife Sandy Price were welcomed by a group of staff and student at Nadi International Airport this morning.

Ahluwalia has been working out of the Samoa Campus in Alafua since March 2022.

This is the first time that they are back in the country since their deportation on 4 February 2021 when the then government claimed Ahluwalia and Price breached conditions of their work permits.

Fiji Government restores University of the South Pacific grant

Prime Minister, Sitiveni Rabuka, said the government is in talks with USP and hopes to reach an agreement on a repayment plan that will be funded in future budgets in addition to USP’s regular annual grant, which will be reinstated in the 2023-2024 budget.

Rabuka confirmed that there will be no mini-budget this year because funds will be redeployed to meet the government’s immediate priorities.

Rabuka also claimed that the redeployment will also accommodate additional funding requests from ministries and other agencies.

USP semester zero initiative will begin on Monday 9 January

The initiative is focused on all first-year students – local and regional students joining the University in 2023. 

Commencing January 9, future USP students will have the opportunity to experience what tertiary education is like for the next five weeks. 

This one-of-a-kind initiative provides a free online orientation for provisional and potential first-year students to learn more about USP and get a “feel” of university life.

Semester Zero is a timely initiative offered only by USP for her students and will be hosted on USP’s Moodle platform. 

Nauru’s USP Campus to operate on normal hours

The institution has advised students and staff members to wear a mask and practice proper sanitisation at all times while on campus.

As of today, only students are allowed to use the resources from the campus to prepare for their upcoming exams.

Students were not allowed to sit for their semester one final exam due to Covid restrictions.

The public has also been advised that Covid measures such as social distancing also applies for hiring of the venue for classes.


Fiji's refusal to pay its dues to USP does not help anybody

The University of the South Pacific vice-chancellor Pal Ahluwalia said the USP's annual budget has been reduced by $US78 million by Fiji's actions.

But Professor Ahluwalia said a lot of work was being done by the governing council to ensure the university continues to achieve results.

"The question of money Fiji owes is really an issue for the USP Council and how the Council and the leaders of the Pacific deal with that.

Nauru President congratulates USP on Times Higher Education Impact Rankings 2022

“Being recognised by the world's foremost ranking organisation is an outstanding achievement that makes us incredibly proud as people of Nauru and the Pacific.”

“Considering our developing regional context, the admission into the global rankings sees USP placed amongst leading universities worldwide and is a tremendous achievement. This success builds on 2021’s outstanding result in the THE Global Rankings which saw the University ranked for the first time in the top 10 per cent worldwide,” President Aingimea said.

Australia Awards Office assists Nauru university students

Nauru Media News reports that the Australia Awards Scholarship applications which are ongoing will close on 29 April after the opportunity was opened on 1 February for those interested in pursuing their academic or professional studies.

Australia Awards Coordinator, Tricia Batsiua said that “the application form is only available online. There is no hardcopy or printed versions for applicants to fill in, it is all done online”.

Dr Hilda Heine appointed USP Pro-chancellor and Chair of Council

The term will commence 1st January 2022 until 31st December 2024.

Dr. Hilda Heine is a renowned Marshallese educator and is no stranger to the University of the South Pacific having served as its 26th Chancellor from 1 July 2019 to 12 January 2020. Dr. Heine was the first female President of the Republic of the Marshall Islands serving from 2016 to 2020.

Nauru’s President aims fire at Fiji in support of USP Vice-Chancellor

Lionel Aingimea tabled part of what’s known as the BDO report in Nauru’s parliament and said it showed “clear violation of university rules, unethical conduct, and gross financial mismanagement by the previous administration”.

Professor Pal Ahluwalia first raised the allegations against his predecessor Rajesh Chandra and others in 2019 after becoming USP’s vice-chancellor, which prompted the investigation by the accounting firm BDO.