Classes are ready to commence for 52 students from catchment communities sponsored by the Tina River Hydropower Development Project (TRHDP) under the Community Benefit Sharing Project (CBSP).
The 22 males and 30 females are continuing students at the Solomon Islands National University (SINU) and the University of South Pacific (USP) Honiara Campus since 2021. They are enrolled in various study programs, such as Electrical Technology, Survey, Plumbing Services, Business/Accounting Studies, Tourism & Hospitality, Environmental Studies, Tropical Agriculture, Automotive Engineering, Teaching, Youth & Development, Construction Management, Secretarial Studies, Fisheries Studies, and Pharmacy Technology.
CBSP Project Officer, Clinton Zinihite said “we have finalised the listing of the continuing students as well as identifying those that have completed their studies in 2022 and will be eligible to graduate.”
“Apart from the 52 continuing students, four others will be successfully graduating from SINU. At this stage, the sponsored students that have completed their studies are mostly those that are doing certificate programs with a duration of 1 year,” he added.
SINU has recently announced that this year’s ceremony is set for April and eligible students will be able to apply for graduation.
While some will be graduating, other classmates from the continuing cohort of students will be undergoing internship trainings.
Two female students studying a Certificate in Hospitality Studies, Rita Chris Soloni and Emelda Bineth are now doing their practicum at the SINU-owned Lokol Fusion Café & Bar. Both have expressed their joy for the opportunity to a be a part of the Tina River Hydro CBSP sponsorship program and are ready to complete their studies, graduate and gain employment.
“I am so excited to be given this study opportunity and the internship training is part of my final assessment before I am able to graduate.”
“After completing my studies here, I am planning to look for a job in my qualified field. I would be more than happy if I was given another opportunity to work for any of the stakeholders for the Tina River Hydro Project in the near future,” said Rita Chris Soloni.
Her colleague, Emelda Bineth said she is also thrilled that she will be graduating and entering the workforce soon.
“After completing this final semester, I am hoping to secure a paid job. The Tina River Hydropower CBSP sponsorship scheme has placed me on the right path and I will graduate with much-needed skills to join the tourism and hospitality workforce.
“Should I be given the opportunity to work under the Tina River Hydropower Development Project (TRHDP), that would be a dream come true. After all, it is a good thing to give back to the Project that has helped me earn my tertiary qualification,” Ms Bineth stated.
According to Mr Zinihite, the majority of the continuing students from cohort 1 and 2 will be completing their studies in June 2023 and will be graduating in 2024.
He also confirmed that for now the Tina River Hydropower CBSP sponsorship scheme will not be enrolling any new students for 2023 and will continue to focus on ensuring the graduation of existing students and completing a thorough review of the program.