Sumit Chand developed a keen interest in computers at a very tender age and was lucky enough to receive his first computer when he started high school.
“I clearly remember my first computer. It was an IBM laptop. I would spend a lot of time on it, trying to learn everything about the beautiful machine.” Chand was inseparable from his computer.
It came as no surprise that he opted to take Computer Studies in high school. This allowed him to learn more.
He realised that the possibilities were endless and that he had only scratched the surface in the field.
This made him decide to take up further studies in that area. After high school, he enrolled in the Trade Diploma in Applied Computing programme at Fiji National University’s (FNU) College of Engineering, Science and Technology (CEST) with classes being offered at the Namaka Campuses.
“I chose FNU because it was affordable and the closest university to home. I did not have to travel for a long time whenever I wanted to go back home. FNU offers a wide range of programmes via its many campuses throughout Fiji, thus making it easier for students to access education closer to home.
Born and raised in Raunitogo, a farming community in the interior of Valley Road, Sigatoka, he had to leave home to stay in Nadi for the duration of his studies.
“I am an only child and am very attached to my parents, so it was difficult for me to leave home and stay away from my parents for the longest time ever. I had to be independent and do everything on my own. I had never done this before,” said Chand with a heavy heart.
Chand knew that in order to fulfil his dream of pursuing further studies, this was an important step he needed to take.
He completed his programme’s industrial attachment requirement at FNU’s Division of Information and Communications Technology at the Namaka Campus and graduated with a Trade Diploma in Applied Computing in 2016. Following his graduation, he enrolled in the Bachelor of Information Systems programme at FNU again at the Natabua Campus.
“While I was doing the Trade Diploma programme, I had decided that I wanted to gain a higher qualification and learn more.
So I continued my education straight after graduation without taking a break.” Chand graduated with a Bachelor of Information Systems in 2018.
“I thank FNU for having the industrial attachment component. This allows us to learn more and apply the theory we learn in the classroom in a practical situation. It also makes us more marketable.
Like many of my friends, I was lucky that I was offered full-time employment with the company where I did the industrial attachment for my Bachelor’s programme – Janty Bondwell Limited.”
Chand currently works for Janty Bondwell Limited as an IT Technician and his responsibilities are to provide technical support to customers by phone, remote access or site visits if needed, being a reference point for all IT related queries at the user level, responding to customer needs promptly and ensuring the optimal running of all systems among other technical duties. Chand dedicates his success to his parents.
“My dad is a vegetable and tobacco farmer, and my mum is a homemaker. Together they worked hard to earn a living, and this inspired me to work hard and to the best of my ability.” Chand advises fresh graduates is to be open to change and keep moving forward.