I only now came across an item in the Samoa Observer about the NUS posting a $1.5 million in its bank account. Very nice was my initial thought, until I saw it is the result mainly of a hefty 60% increase in course fees since 1912 (with another 10% increase due this year).
A 10% increase in student fees every year is steep by any measure. And for the university to then tout in the media a $1.5 million bank account balance, shows something seriously missing there.
NUS was set up to among other things provide quality and affordable higher education for the children of Samoa. And you can’t raise student fees of this magnitude every year and still be considered affordable for most Samoan families.
Then boasting about your bank account balance is rubbing salt to the resulting wound. One can only wonder how many students have never started at NUS or dropped out along the way because their parents can’t afford the ever rising fee levels.
But with all that loot in the bank now, how about a cleanup and face lift for Samoa’s national university’s front yard and gateway to the world? The place is a mess.
Last time I drove by, the area was strewn with rubbish, mostly plastic, a perfect but ugly match for the scruffy looking food stalls that wouldn’t look out of place in one of those refugee camps one sees on television.
And while you’re at it, why not do something about the traffic chaos at the front gate area before someone, most likely a student is injured or killed? The place is an accident waiting to happen, and you can bet on that happening unless some order is established and observed there soon.
Affordable Education Supporter