The National Higher and Technical Education Board (NHTEB) held its inaugural meeting from the 12th to 13th October, 2016 at the Gateway Hotel in Port Moresby. The board consisting of seven members met for the first time after a lengthy process of identification and selection of suitable and qualified members. Honorable Francis Marus, MP Minister for Higher Education, Research, Science and Technology in welcoming the pioneering board members on Wednesday 12th October stated that it was rewarding to see all members together after all the efforts of the department in putting together the board.
The members of NHTEB are Fr Jan Czuba, Chairman of the Board and Chairman of the Western Pacific University, Mr Paul Barker Director of Institute of National Affairs, Professor Chalapan Kaluwin Dean of Professor for Environmental Science, UPNG, Dr Janice Cameron Director of the Academic Quality Agency for New Zealand Universities, Dr Anne Martin Consultant in Higher Education, Professor Kevin McConkey Emeritus Professor of Psychology, University of New South Wales and Dr Ludmilla Salonda Senior Lecturer, Divine Word University.
The Honorable Minister stressed on the roles and responsibilities of the Board under the Higher Education (General Provisions) Act 2014 and that is to raise the quality and standard of higher education provision in the country. He further acknowledged the vast experiences each individual member had in the higher and technical education sector and believe that these experiences will be used to help improve the quality of higher education and its provision in the country.
Meanwhile, the members expressed sincere appreciation to the Minster and the Secretary for the Department for their appointment and pledged their commitment to work collaboratively to lift the standards and quality of higher education.
The Secretary for the Department of Higher Education, Research, Science & Technology (DHERST) Professor David Kavanamur highlighted that the level of representation on the Board bears witness to the great importance that the members attached to the board and its mandate. This is the beginning of a new era for Quality Assurance of higher and technical education in Papua New Guinea.
The higher and technical education landscape continues to change and there are newer challenges that must be addressed strategically in order to mitigate the repercussions and capitalize on the benefits.
Professor Kavanamur also acknowledged and expressed sincere appreciation to the members of the former Commission for Higher Education who made tremendous contributions to the higher and technical education sector of PNG. Among other achievements, their tireless efforts have seen academic programs and institutions being accredited as higher education qualifications and institutions respectively. He further added that NHTEB now takes on this responsibility.
He assured the board of the department’s support in ensuring the Board functions effectively and efficiently.