Vila Times

USP to build new Solomon Islands Campus

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The University of the South Pacific (USP) will hold an official ground-breaking ceremony for its new Solomon Islands Campus in Honiara.

Takehiko Nakao, President of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and Manasseh Sogavare, Prime Minister of Solomon Islands will be attending the event with other dignitaries including Government Ministers, Members of Parliament, Pro-Chancellor and Chair of USP Council, Winston Thompson, and representatives of USP’s development partners, at the KGVI Basketball Court on 24 August, 2017.

The new campus when completed, according to Professor Rajesh Chandra, Vice-Chancellor and President of USP, demonstrates the firm commitment of the Government of Solomon Islands and USP in working together for the development of this country’s education system, reports PACNEWS.

For this project, the ADB provided a loan of US$15.4million to USP, which has been guaranteed by the Solomon Islands Government. In addition, US$1.5m grant has also been provided under ADB’s Clean Energy Financing Partnership Facility (CEFPF) for the construction of a solar panel photovoltaic system which will meet 75 per cent of the energy needs at the new Campus.

“USP is indeed grateful for this partnership with ADB to help increase our Campus capacity in Solomon Islands,” he stated.

The new SI Campus will have enhanced ICT-based education with upgraded ICT equipment and improved ICT based learning programmes, allowing students to learn through face-to-face, and flexible learning (FL) or blended modes.

Some key features of the new building design include facilities such as a fully digitised library, outdoor performance space, and moot court, specialised study areas with device charging ports, smart classrooms/lecture theatres and a large multi-purpose hall.

This will be USP’s first campus to have distinctive features such as roof mounted Solar PV panels, Public Health facility and an overall Pacific theme.

The new Campus will also comprise a well-thought-out disability access through the campus together with disability seating provisions at the lecture theatres.