NATION

University Raises Salaries, Standards In Major Changes, Reveals Head

The Fiji National University has raised salaries for its academic staff to attract and retain top talent. Vice-Chancellor Professor Nigel Healey disclosed this in an interview with the Fiji Sun
03 Aug 2017 18:16
University Raises Salaries, Standards In Major Changes, Reveals Head
Fiji National University Vice Chancellor Professor Nigel Healey. Photo: Sheldon Chanel

The Fiji National University has raised salaries for its academic staff to attract and retain top talent.

Vice-Chancellor Professor Nigel Healey disclosed this in an interview with the Fiji Sun yesterday.

While he did not reveal the details, he said the increase was to address a large number of key academic vacancies.

He also announced that significant changes would be made to curriculum design, infrastructure and staff development.

The previously “uncompetitive” salaries were part of the review, he added.

Professor Healey said: “FNU’s academic salaries have historically been low relative to other Fiji institutions, notably the University of the South Pacific, which has made it hard to attract and retain the top academic talent we need to drive the development of our teaching and research.

“FNU has been carrying a large number of academic vacancies in key areas, which we have been unable to fill due to our uncompetitive salaries.

These staff shortages have had an adverse impact on our ability to support our students.”

Junior academic staff, such as tutors and assistant lecturers, received the bulk of the salary increase, which, Professor Healey said, was part of a “comprehensive exercise, parallel to that carried out for Government employees by the Civil Service.”

The changes to curriculum design would rigorously be reviewed before they were implemented, as the university planned a shift to a semester based calendar in 2018, he said.

He also revealed the major overhaul would cover HR policies and processes that underpin decision-making at the institution, saying opportunities for staff development and training are set to multiply.

“We need to invest more in training our academic staff to improve the quality of our teaching and so there is an initiative underway to set up learning centres to support staff development,” Professor Healey said.

Edited by Naisa Koroi

Feedback: jyotip@fijisun.com.fj



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