Malakai Tuinasau Tadulala proudly made his way down to the main stage at the Fiji National University’s (FNU) Nasinu Campus last month to receive his Gold Medal award from the Acting Vice-Chancellor, Dr William May. Tadulala received the commendation as top of his August 2021 graduating class in the Postgraduate Diploma in Environmental Science and Management course, which he undertook at FNU’s College of Engineering, Science and Technology (CEST).
After receiving his certification from CEST Dean, Professor Tibor Pasinszki, Tadulala felt a sense of accomplishment and was not short of acknowledgments for those who supported his academic journey.
“I would like to acknowledge and thank God Almighty for the opportunity and the blessings,” he said.
“This Gold Medal is dedicated to all that had believed in me. To my beloved family here and abroad, especially my wife Folauhola Tadulala and my two kids, my siblings, my dad Malakai Bola Tadulala for the spiritual, personal
and financial support and not forgetting my deceased mother Venina Sevakarua Tadulala who passed away in 2011.”
“I must also acknowledge my Goodnews Mission Church Pastor James Young, brother Isikeli Ralovo, brother Aseri Raratabu, Deacon Samu and Mrs Ralovo, to whom I owe gratitude for family and spiritual counselling.”
Tadulala was also grateful to the support of academic lecturers such as Associate Professors Ulukalesi Bale Tamata and Satyanarayan Shastri, and his classmates.
“We had interesting lectures, discussions and Zoom classes which enabled me to understand the course units and the application of theories and case studies,” he said.
“This was complemented by the use of global, regional, and local case studies that are realistic, applicable and genuine situational problems that was in line with the UN SDG 2030 Goals, or that may support the future of our environmental protection in Fiji through Conventions, Protocols, and Policies under the framework of environmental-related laws and legislations.”
Tadulala also reflected on the obstacles he endured leading up to, and during his studies.
“I worked as a civil servant for the last 12 years as a Senior Scientific Officer – Hydrogeologist, but lost my employment, which was a difficult phase for me,” he shared.
“I also endured family issues and the COVID-19 pandemic made things more challenging. I missed my only daughter, Amora Senikau Cinnamon Tadulala’s, first birthday and my eldest son’s fifth birthday, as he was in Lautoka.”
After sleepless nights, unsuccessful applications, and feelings of despair, Tadulala decided to pursue his postgraduate qualifications at FNU.
“FNU was the best choice for me and made a significant difference in my life,” he said.
“As a private student, I did my research prior to enrolling and compared the learning experience and outcomes at each tertiary option available before deciding on the national University.”
“I worked thrice as hard and studied strategically, utilising the online learning method to my advantage. This journey also allowed me to see the hand of God reaching out to me, as I had faith and hope that one day I would reunite
with my family and land my dream job.”
Tadulala plans to one day register and operate as a principal Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) consultant and publish reports he has collated over the years.
He has also applied for a Masters by Research scholarship at FNU. His thesis proposal is on Eco Hydrology and Climate Variabilities: Strengthening Integrated Water Resources Management and Integrated Coastal Management in the Nadi River Watershed, Navua River Watershed, Waimanu River Watershed and Rewa River Watershed in Viti Levu Island, Fiji.
Words of Wisdom
Tadulala encouraged others to pursue their academic ambitions despite their hardships and never give up on their dreams.
“It is also never too late to start and it’s also never too late to finish.”
“Your desire for prosperity is in the palm of your hands on landing your dream job, a new car or new house and all these depend on how much effort you put in. Most importantly, believe in the Grace of God and yourself. Nothing is impossible when the heart is willing.”
Study at FNU
High school and other prospective students can Apply Now for Semester 1, 2022 studies in a Higher Education (HE) or Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) course at FNU.
Students completing or have completed Year 12 or 13 can undergo Semester 1 studies in a TVET course at FNU through the 5,000 Tertiary Scholarships and Loans Service (TSLS) placements.
Continuing students of an FNU TVET course are also eligible and can apply for the placement.
Offered through the University’s TVET Pasifika, these courses are Certificate III, Certificate IV and Diploma level qualifications.
Students eligible for TSLS-funded studies must have successfully completed Year 12 with a minimum mark of 200/400 or completed Level I and II studies from the Technical College of Fiji.
Students can visit our website on www.fnu.ac.fj to learn more about our programmes and submit an online application.