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Palau National Scholarship Board hosted the Palau Fellowship Orientation on Friday January 3 with the intention of getting 6 young Palauan college graduates ready to enter the workforce. This all day event featured a variety of guests working in different sectors in Palau.

Special Prosecutor April Cripps spoke with the graduates about anti-corruption and doing the right thing in the work place. Jefferson Thomas, Dean of Palau Community College touched on how to be a professional Palauan in the work place. Terra Nabeyama of Bureau of Public Service System talked about the process of finding a job as well as the time-frame it takes to get a response back from employers. Special Assistant of the Vice President, Elway Ikeda informed the graduates about the labor regulations.

Noe Yalap, Student Network Specialist for Palau National Scholarship Program expressed that the event was a success and the 6 graduates are in the process of applying for jobs. Additionally, Noe Yalap along with the National Scholarship Board were pleased with the graduates’ decision of coming back home in order to contribute to Palau’s development.

Shiprah Tellames, one of the graduate interns said that the orientation was very helpful for her. She added that the guest speakers provided a lot of information that she didn’t know about before regarding Palau’s workforce and that the advice given by each one of the speakers were valuable for her.

Graduate intern Sharnel Sumang felt that the orientation was very valuable for her as well. The guest speakers and board members talked about their educational experiences along with work experience. She said that each experience was different and inspirational. She added that being new in seeking employment in Palau, the stories that were shared really made a difference to her.

Chur Oiph, Scholarship Coordinator mentioned that there are few challenges of trying to bring back recent Palauan college graduates such as salary, benefits, or job opportunities and that Palau faces stiff competition with other regions that might provide more opportunities for college graduates. However, she stated that the fellowship program is one of the major efforts being done to try to bring them back. Some of the benefits include paid airline tickets as well as job internships.

The graduates will be interning in selected employment fields for 8 weeks and getting paid by the National Scholarship Board.  Upon completion, companies or agencies they interned with may hire them as full employees. (Telbakes Yano)