Crown Prince Tupouto‘a opens Tonga National University

His Royal Highness Crown Prince Tupouto’a ‘Ulukālala has officially opened the kingdom’s new national university today.

The name is Tonga National University with its motto: Truth, Justice, Freedom.

Crown Prince Tupouto’a

“His Royal Highness Crown Prince Tupouto’a ‘Ulukalala this afternoon was the Royal Guest of Honour in a milestone achievement for Education in Tonga as the new Tonga National University was launched in Pahu, here on Tongatapu”, a statement said.

Prince Tupouto’a unveiled the university’s plaque, billboard and launched the university’s website.

The Honourable Prime Minister, Hu’akavameiliku, thanked HRH Crown Prince Tupouto’a for gracing the historic event and announced that His Majesty King Tupou VI has also agreed to be the university’s Chancellor.

“As the Interim Pro-Chancellor of the Tonga National University (TNU), it is indeed my pleasure to welcome you to the inaugural assembly of the TNU. Today we are gathered to witness the coming to fruition of a national dream that was envisaged for many decades,” the Hon Prime Minister and TNU Interim Pro-Chancllor said .

“His Majesty the King of Tonga, Tupou VI, has honoured the TNU with his sanction and dedication, by graciously acting as the Chancellor of the University and has envisioned the University with the tripartite motto of: Truth, Justice, Freedom – Ko e Mo’oni, Ko e Totonu mo e Tau’ataina.

“Established by legal mandate of the The Tonga National University Act, Government is obliged by law to ensure the establishment and prudent management and administration of the TNU.  As such, 6 government-owned higher education institutions have merged to form the TNU – a hybrid university – offering both academic and vocational study programs. As we address the financial challenges of the post-covid period, a cost-effective option for tertiary studies is a significant commitment by the Government to support the upskilling and professional development of our young generation.”

The TNU comprises of 5 Faculties, delivering more than 50 programs ranging from Certificates to Diplomas and to Degrees. The programs cater for skills and knowledge-based demands of not only the Tongan employment market, but to also harness the opportunities from overseas skills demands.

Hon Hu’akavameiliku said the TNU is Tonga’s national university, a place to study while staying close to family and social networks and support, whilst contributing to the community and sustaining our local economy and workforce.

“I extend my best wishes to you as ‘pioneer’ students of the Tonga National University and strongly encourage you to maximize your potential while you study at TNU. I do hope your journey in learning will be guided by Truth,  in the pursuit of Justice, and in the spirit of Freedom.”

The President of the Free Wesleyan Church of Tonga, Rev Dr Tevita Koloa’ia Havea dedicated the university and its staff during the program.

In attendance were Cabinet Ministers, senior staff of other local based universities, members of the Diplomatic Corps, senior civil servants, staff of the TNU and the Ministry of Education and Training, senior management of the Tonga Police Force and other invited guests.

Senior TNU staff revealed today were Dr Tangikina Moimoi Stein (Interim Vice Chancellor), Dr Raelyn ‘Esau (Dean of Faculty of Business and Public Administration) and Dr Sela Teisina (Dean of Facullty of Education, Arts and Humanities).

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