BY JAMIE HARO
ONE famous American politician once said: “You’re never too old to start learning, and you’re never too young to aim high and achieve great things”.
That proverb rings so true for proud 60-year-old father James Anda, who last Thursday walked up to the stage with his two sons to receive their certificates during the PNG Education Institute graduation.
“Financially we (had) struggled to get to where we are right now. Our other family members had to suffer the consequences of sending the three (of us to pursue our studies and get the qualifications). (But) it all paid off when we received them.”
Father-of-five James, from Karel Village in Mendi, Southern Highlands, walked up with his second eldest son Peter to receive their Bachelor in school leadership and management degrees.
Younger son Jonathan received his Diploma in Teaching technical vocational education pre-service.
James, a long-serving primary school teacher who recently completed 40 years of service, has been working as a provincial elementary teacher training coordinator for Southern Highlands and Hela. He recently changed the programme to early childhood learning coordination.
His two sons are, like their father, also teachers. They teach in Jiwaka.
Peter, 39, has clocked 19 years as a primary school teacher. He teaches as a senior subject master at the Kurumul Primary School in South Waghi, Jiwaka.
His younger brother Jonathan, 25, recently began his teaching career at the Kuli Teaching Technical Vocational Education (TVET) in the same district.
Peter spoke on behalf of the two brothers in thanking their dad for his support and guidance in bringing them up to achieve what they had been aiming for.
“We are so grateful that our dad made it his business to ensure the both of us graduate with proper qualifications. He is a great father and we wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for him.”
“ Financially we (had) struggled to get to where we are right now. (But) our other family members had to suffer the consequences of sending the three (of us to pursue our studies and get the qualifications). It all paid off when we received them.”
Their other brother Joe, who is older than them, is a soldier serving with the PNG Defence Force.
Dad James told of the financial challenges they had to overcome to fulfil their ambition to serve the people as teachers.
His two youngest children too had to endure difficulties as the family tried to deal with their financial situation the best way they could in order for him and his sons to qualify. Now that they have qualified, they can take care of the younger siblings.
Immediate family members flew from Mendi to Port Moresby to witness the graduation of dad James and sons Peter and Jonathan. Relatives in Port Moresby also joined in the celebrations.
James, Peter and Jonathan have created a standard for the family to follow – or surpass.
For James, he attests to the proverb “you are never too old to learn new things”. He has set a perfect goal, a yardstick even, for his children, and family members, to follow.