Marist needs to inspire and instill healthy competition within students

PHOTO: Marist Primary students finding former student and Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi in their midst during the celebration of Mass at the Immaculate Conception of Mary Cathedral, Mulivai yesterday

Story & Photos by Lagi Keresoma

APIA, SAMOA – FRIDAY 14 SEPTEMBER 2018: The Marist Brothers Schools take pride in their former students holding top jobs within Government and the private sector. But if they want to continue the trend, then there must be a change in place in the school strategy.

This was the advice from one of Marist Brother’s longest serving teachers, Brother Iulio Suaesi who started his teaching career at Marist Mulivai in 1974, and is currently working as a counsellor at the St. Joseph College for the past 3 years.

Brother Iulio said gone are the days of healthy competition amongst students where they inspired themselves and strive for the best.

He said students then did not wait for teachers to inspire or challenge them, but took it upon themselves to ensure they have a bright future before them.

“There is a big difference with the current situation and I see that it is not getting any better, and I guess it is just the way young people are these days,” Brother Suaesi told Talamua.

Brother Iulio Suaesi and former student Joseph Lauofo

He said that teachers are trying their best to inspire and push students to be involved not only academically but sports.

He believes there are students who are relying and depending solely on parents to do their work for them.

He urged parents and teachers to work together to inspire the students to be innovative and creative.

“Teachers also need to be innovative and create more academic competition within their teaching strategy,” he said.

Brother Suaesi’s colourful career with Marist Brothers School started in 1974 before he was sent off to teach at a Marist Brothers School in Fiji.

After Fiji, he came back and taught at the Catholic Ulimasao School, Savai’i before returning to Marist Mulivai. Later, he was transferred to teach at Malaeloa, Leone in American Samoa.

He was again recruited by the Marist Brothers Province, New Zealand to teach young boys who wanted to serve as Brothers that included students from Tonga, Fiji, Samoa and Kiribati.

A view inside the Immaculate Conception of Mary Cathedral during Mass to celebrate130 years of the Marist Brothers contribution to education in Samoa

During the celebration of Marist Brothers Education 130 years in Samoa this week, Brother Suaesi had the chance to meet some of his former students especially during yesterday’s welcome Ava ceremony.

One such student was Joseph Lauofo who is currently the President of the Marist Old Boys Group in Melbourne, Australia.

He was Brother Siaosi’s student in 1984 at Marist Mulivai.

The 130th anniversary celebrations started with a Mass at the Immaculate Conception of Mary Cathedral, Mulivai that was well attended by the Marist’s Old Pupils Association, the Marist Brothers students Mulivai, and St. Joseph College Alafua.

The Mass was led by Archbishop Alapati Mataeliga and attended by former students who are leaders in various fields such as business and politics.

The President of the Marist Old Boys Association Tuatagaloa Aumua Ming Leung Wai taking his ava during the welcome ava ceremony