3 Times Repeater Bags Degree

‘Seeing what my parents have gone through to provide for my education from the time I started up to today continues to motivate me to work hard.’
13 May 2022 17:25
3 Times Repeater Bags Degree
University of the South Pacific graduate Sikeli Ravuvu after his graduation on May 12, 2022 at the FMF Gymnasium. Photo: Leon Lord

Sikeli Ravuvu refused to listen to naysayers when he studied for his Year 12 Examination for the third time.

Yesterday was his proudest moment as bagged his Tourism and Management Degree from the University of the South Pacific (USP).

Mr Ravuvu had joined the Matua Programme in Nabua when the Fijian Government introduced the Free Education Grant initiative in 2014.

He saw this as a second chance to his long-time dream of attaining a degree.

The Naitasiri native attempted his Year 12 education three times.

“I struggled to put myself through school because of people saying I was too old and dumb to be in school, let alone to do my secondary education,” he said.

“When enrolled for the third time in my Year 12, people talked about how crazy I might be doing the same thing over again.”

Mr Ravuvu said suicidal thoughts filled his mind because the pressure was too much, but he worked hard to get the breakthrough he dreamt of.

“It was my parents’ tough love that helped me shut everything going on in my life at the time.”

Without regret Mr Ravuvu, 31, made it his goal to wear the brown gown one day.

He made a promise to graduate no matter what – it later became his inspiration.


BA Tourism and Hospitality

He graduated with his Bachelor of Arts majoring in Tourism and Hospitality Management.

“Four years at USP trying to get this piece of paper was not easy. I cried. I almost gave up. I doubted my purpose on earth. But my faith in the Lord kept me grounded to my schoolwork,” he said.

“Seeing what my parents have gone through to provide for my education from the time I started to today continues to motivate me to work hard.

“Unfortunately, my father is no longer here. My mother told me he would have been proud of me.”

“Call me a failure, I don’t care. I pat myself on my shoulders covered with this gown because I’m happy and content for not giving up during tough times.”

Mr Ravuvu is already working in a prominent resort.

“My career has kick-started, and it means another set of mountains to move with God by my side,” he said.

Over 2000 students will graduate from the university this semester.




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