Master of Industrial Relations and Human Resources Management, 2003-2004
University of Sydney, Sydney
Chief Executive Officer
Fiji Commerce and Employers Federation
How has studying in Australia impacted your professional and personal life?
I was a professional musician for 20 years until I realised that it was time to go back to university. I applied three times before being awarded for the scholarship. It showed the level of perseverance I had towards my goal and it was never too late to learn. In terms of management, I took this program because I felt organisations here did not place human resources at the strategic level even though people are the asset of an organisation.
In a span of time in Fiji, trade unions were very strong. The government was re-active to the needs of the trade unions and there were no pro-active measures in place. Through my studies in Australia, I was also able to highlight the importance of industrial relations as I was the first Fijian to graduate from this program.
My first job after studies was General Manger of Fiji Development Bank. We have priorities employment for all-especially people who are marginalised- which has allowed me to bring a lot of people from the rural areas to contribute to rural banking.
I have also worked on a publication for child labour for employers, promoted corporate social responsibility within 500 members under the Fiji Commerce and Employers Federation, served on the board of Australia Pacific Training Coalition for several years and joined the regional subcommittee in International Labour Organisation in the Pacific. Last year, I worked with small business that could not afford insurance around the country on climate mitigation strategy.
I thank the Australia Awards for providing me the opportunity to fulfill my dream. Now, I have gained the confidence to see issues on the ground, speak up and make a difference.