FNU’s Pacific Centre for Maritime Studies to lead South Pacific’s Maritime Education

Press Release Posted On: March 18, 2024

Students during their practical class.

The Fiji National University (FNU) has rebranded its former Fiji Maritime Academy to the Pacific Centre for Maritime Studies (PCMS).

This strategic rebranding reflects FNU’s commitment to expanding its maritime education programmes to serve the wider Pacific region.

As a leading dual-sector transformative university predic­­­ated on inclusiveness, innovation and accessibility for Fiji and the Pacific, FNU is committed to serving the people of Fiji and the Pacific through collaborations, partnerships, excellence, and sustainability.

FNU Vice-Chancellor Professor Unaisi Nabobo-Baba.

FNU Vice-Chancellor Professor Unaisi Nabobo-Baba outlined a vision for the Pacific Centre for Maritime Studies to be the premier maritime training institution in the Pacific region.

“In alignment with The FNU Strategic Plan 2024-2026 Priority Area 2, FNU dedicates itself to educational excellence, empowering graduates with the skills, knowledge, and entrepreneurial spirit to thrive in competitive industries. Priority Area 2 ensures FNU provides exceptional learning experiences across both TVET and Higher Education,” Professor Nabobo-Baba said.

“Over the years, PCMS has groomed many graduates who have successfully worked for shipping companies in the country and the region,” she said.

She added that the Fiji National University has a mandate to support both local sustainability and positive linkages across the Pacific and global communities.

“The University can achieve this through fostering a holistic educational approach that highlights the interconnectedness of local, regional, and global challenges, guiding students towards solutions that reflect this awareness.”

FNU’s Pro-Vice-Chancellor TVET Dr Isimeli Tagicakiverata, said the move in the change of the name is part of the FNU strategy to produce consistent sustainable numbers of seafarers for Fiji and the Pacific region.

FNU Pro-Vice-Chancellor Dr Isimeli Tagicakiverata.

The accreditation is mainly through the International Maritime Organisation and regulations and audits by the Maritime Safety Authority of Fiji. We are also pursuing  Asia Pacific Accreditation and Certification Commission (APACC) accreditation which means that all our qualifications are recognised in the 17 APACC countries,” Dr Tagicakiverata said.

“This will boost the morale of students at PCMS and will make it the maritime institution of choice and the hub of maritime studies in the region.”

“Plans are already in place to include a stronger industry engagement and partnership. PCMS will work very closely with MSAF and IMO and the local stakeholders to ensure that training is aligned to international maritime standards, and we produce upwards of 500 seafarers every year.”

The Centre’s Acting Director, Captain Tevita Robanakadavu said it would be the hub in the region for maritime studies.

“We have been producing quality graduates for many years, and we will continue to equip students with the best knowledge and skills and prepare them for the workforce in the maritime sector,” Captain Robanakadavu said.

“We are committed to providing our students with the highest quality maritime education, adhering to international standards and surpassing industry expectations. We achieve this through our emphasis on professionalism, ethical conduct, systems improvement, staff development, and a steadfast dedication to student achievement.

The Centre has a proven record of developing highly skilled mariners for Fiji and the greater Pacific region since relocating to Laucala Bay in 1982 after it was established in 1970 by the Fijian Government.