Seize opportunities: Scholar

The National, Friday July 15th, 2016

A two-time scholarship recipient will be travelling to New Zealand next Monday to pursue his third scholarship for a masters degree with honours in Applied practice majoring in community development and management.
Rodney Uvovo from Gorohanota village in Goroka, Eastern Highlands is married with five children and works with the National Volunteer Service as the programme manager for community liaison and awareness. However, his big family and busy schedule do not stop him from pursuing every study opportunity that came his way.
He was first awarded a scholarship under the Australian AID (AusAID) and made Brisbane his second home when he flew over to do his diploma in community Services and Community work at the Southbank Institute of TAFE.
It was soon after that he received his second scholarship within the same year to do a Bachelor in Social Practice majoring in Community Development at the Unitec Institute of Technology in Auckland, New Zealand.
“This is my third time to secure a scholarship to do Masters with honours in Applied Practice Majoring in Community Development and Management.
“I will be flying on the 18th of this month and I just want to acknowledge my boss who is the executive director of the National Volunteer Service, Ernesto Ortega for endorsing me under the public service staff development training policy with the Department Monitoring and Planning and for allowing me to take up this course.”
Uvovo who will be studying at the Unitec Institute of Technology, the same institution where his son, David is currently doing his second year of studies in a Bachelor in Environmental Engineering course majoring in Climate Change, says that although this opportunity would be challenging, he was fully committed to achieving the best in his studies as well.
“I am proud to be studying with my son in the same university and in the same environment although this has happened coincidentally I am very proud to be attending this institution with him and I understand there will be challenges along the way but I am a very committed person and I know what I want to achieve.
“When I was in Australia, I was based at the Southbank Institute of TAFE and in New Zealand I was at the Unitec Institute of Technology where I graduated with merit that is why they (NZAID and Unitec) called me up again and offered this scholarship after I had applied,” Uvovo said.
Uvovo said there should be more awareness on the availability of scholarships. Having secured three scholarships so far he has noticed that most educated people were not aware of the opportunity available to them.
“Since this is my third time, there should be a lot of research done to locate scholarships. People are not utilising the opportunities that are there in front of them. I don’t think people out there are making use of their resources to the full. Opportunities are there, you just need to research and find out.
“I want to encourage young people to do research and explore more opportunities because there are more opportunities for studying out there that we are not aware of and once you find them, there is no turning back as the windows of our mind will start to expand with so much knowledge learnt.”
Uvovo will graduate in 2018 while his son David will graduate the following year.
“I am definitely aiming for more scholarship opportunities to pursue my interest in development studies after I graduate and I encourage young people out there to further their studies, not just stop after they graduate but push on to look for more study opportunities and make the most of it.”