Nearly 200 college graduates from Vanuatu will be receiving financial assistance from the Government to pursue their goals for a higher education this year.
These candidates sat the Year 13 and 14 examination last year and were shortlisted by the National Scholarships and Training Board (NSTB) because of their good marks.They have completed their studies with distinction.
115 were selected from the country’s top English speaking secondary schools and 49 from French institutions.
These young deserving graduates would get the chance to study in a different country.
But, under the new government’s directive, the present candidates are encouraged to choose courses from leading higher institutions just within the country including the University of the South Pacific (USP).
Instead of sending students oversea, the government has decided to start awarding scholarships locally.
Approximately over Vt500 million is spend on scholarships every year.
The new directive will ensure students have access to higher education in their home country where they can be supported by families.
The local institutions are upgrading the level of the courses they are offering to generate human resources who are productive in building a vibrant Vanuatu for the next generation.
Throughout this week, officials from the Ministry of Education and Training (MOET) and higher institutions like USP, Vanuatu Agriculture College and Edwards Institute of Technology (CNS) will be helping the new scholarship intakes explore career options.
The students will be able to learn the courses that they are passionate about in each of the institutions. After the counseling, they will go through an interview with the NSTB.
While speaking to the Year 13 graduates in counseling yesterday, the Principal Education Officer (PEO) of the National Scholarships Office, John Kaltau, said “these young scholars really are the cream of the nation’s young minds”.
That is why the government through its scholarship scheme provides education opportunities and financial support to keep nurturing them until they complete their educational journey.
Those students have been encouraged to choose their scholarship courses wisely and the need to align them (courses) with the national human resource needs.
One of the senior officers told the students: “Do not choose a course because your friends are taking it. Some students did that only to ask to withdraw the courses later because they find them difficult.
“Take your time, talk to your parents and institutions to evaluate your choices. Choose your best option so that you will not regret.
“Your choice is your inspiration as it will lead to the job of your lifetime”.
The candidates will receive their award letters once they successfully completed their interviews.