The Fiji National University’s (FNU) College of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences (CMNHS) has marked its historic relationship with regional countries by launching their flags as part of the University’s 10th-year anniversary celebrations during the 2020 Student Orientation at Pasifika Campus.

CMNHS
formerly known as the Suva Medical School has been educating health
professionals from the region since 1885 having graduated first two regional
students in 1916.

Students
from Fiji and the region, who will start their University life at the College
from next week were elated to be part of this year’s College Orientation
programme.

FNU
Vice-Chancellor Professor Nigel Healey said University environment was an
opportunity to grow intellectually and personally.

“The
FNU family is here to support you in your journey and our academic staff are
here to teach, mentor and guide you in your studies.”

“In
your working life, nothing will stay the same: not the patients you treat, not
the technology you use and not what you do at work each day,” Professor Healey
commented.

He
said: “The only way to prepare yourselves is to gain a good University
education that lays down a solid foundation of technical and transferrable
skills-and be willing to return to formal education in the years ahead to
upskill and reskill as the world changes around you”.

While
congratulating the students on securing a placement at the University, the Dean
of CMNHS, Dr William May said the College strives to put the students at the
centre of everything.

“You
have joined an institution, part of which was opened by Her Majesty Queen
Elizabeth II on December 17th 1953. You also become part of two very
old health professional training institutions in the region.”

“This
can seem as daunting as it is exciting, as challenging as it is empowering. But
the great thing is that you are doing something that you have chosen to do,” he
said.

“While
you are here at CMNHS you will have the opportunity to learn new things,
acquire new knowledge, develop new skills, and enhance your personal attributes
in profound ways that will equip for life after University.”

Dr
May added that at the same time students would make new friends who would
become their friends for life.

The
Dean also advised the freshmen to take responsibility of their learning and to
make the most of their time at the College.

“Embrace
the difference because the University is a melting pot.”

“You
have come from different backgrounds and communities to pursue your ambitions
together as students.”

Australian Department of
Foreign Affairs and Trade representative, Rochelle White, said they were proud
to be a partner with FNU.

“You are about to begin a big
journey and once you go back to your countries as professionals, you will be
seen as a leader in your communities.”

“The best resource that you
have is each other and you can always turn to your friends and lecturers
whenever you need anything,” she said.

One of the flag bearers,
Teeri Komwenga, a year three Bachelor of Medical Imaging Science student said
she felt proud to see her country represented at the College.

“When I will walk into the
campus, I will see my country’s flag and it will motivate me to study hard.”

“Seeing the 12 regional
countries’ flag on campus also highlights the fact that CMNHS welcomes every
student here and that is a huge sign of equality.”

FNU formally opened its doors for business in 2010. The
University was created by virtue of the Fiji National University Act 2009 which
amalgamated six government higher education colleges, each of which had a long
and distinguished academic history.

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