Ronic Joe, APTC Student Welfare and Scholarship Coordinator at the Vanuatu Campus, "works tirelessly with and for our students," said Ms Jan Matheson, APTC Vanuatu Country Manager. "He carries out a myriad of tasks with a smile on his face and a joke in place."
The start of the semester sees Ronic at the airport all days of the week, and hours of the day, meeting and greeting new students arriving from overseas.
"Ronic negotiates with landlords, settles students into their new accommodation, and advises students on 'all things Vanuatu', including advice on budgeting, life in a 'shared house', homesickness, phone systems, and shopping for food. He also prepares cyclone safety kits and advises on safe procedures during our volatile weather patterns, and organises (and excels at) the weekly student/staff social volleyball matches," explained Ms Matheson.
Ronic conducts the APTC student Orientation programs, and co-ordinates the programs that the students undertake on cross-cutting issues such as human rights, the introduction to gender equity and children's rights, and HIV/Aids' education.
"If needed, Ronic is available to assist the students 24 hours a day," explained Ms Matheson. "He keeps track of student absences and illnesses, and ensures that students have access to medical facilities if needed."
Ronic's skills in Bislama, English and French ensure he is able to communicate with students from both outer and local islands of Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, and Tonga.
Ronic has been with APTC for two years, and came to this position well-equipped with a diverse range of skills from his previous position as Project Manager on Youth Projects, for the Foundation for the People of the South Pacific (FSP), an a Australian Aid funded project on the island of Santo.
"Ronic has also had the opportunity to meet with his fellow APTC Welfare Officers and contributed to the implementation of a range of "best practice" for the students," concluded Ms Matheson.
"Not only do we thank Ronic for his dedication to the students and to APTC, but we also thank his wife and two children for supporting Ronic as he makes himself available for many out-of-office activities to ensure our students' welfare needs are met.
"Ronic - you're the man!"