As a fellow of East-West Center, I was given the opportunity to give talks–and do so much more–for two weeks in Honolulu and on the Big Island in mid-March. It all began with five presentations to classes in Ethnic Studies and Pacific Island Studies at the University of Hawaii. Why the ethic bias against Micronesians in Hawaii these days? How were Japanese migrants to Micronesia treated before the war? Read More
Victor Levine, an education consultant with lots of experience in the Pacific and beyond, has done a study of the Chuuk education system and published a long article for the East-West Center entitled “Education in Pacific Island States.” Victor and I are planning to collaborate on a new project aimed at developing a set of objective indicators that can be used to track improvements in the education system in that part of the northern Pacific that we still call Micronesia. The point of it all is to Read More
Below are just a few thoughts prompted by the Xavier graduation on May 31. I jumped at the chance to attend because it was a homecoming for me. My introduction to Micronesia was through the prism of this high school in 1963, fifty years ago, when I began a three-year teaching stint at Xavier. Read More
I’ve been back in Chuuk for the past week as part of an effort to push education reform there. Toward the end of the week, I found myself back at Xavier High School–the place where I was first introduced to the islands just 50 years ago. Xavier is also the new home for the MicSem library. So this trip was something of a sentimental journey for me.
But the flow of memories took some strange turns. Barely an hour after my arrival at Xavier, a man came up and introduced himself as Basilio, one of the workmen at the school. When I told him that I was once director of the school, he said that he remembered me at that time. I asked him how long he had been working at Xavier. “Six years,” he said. “Not far enough back,” I replied, “I was director long before then, during the 1970s.” He smiled but insisted that he knew me long before he began working with the school. “Don’t you remember?” he said. “I was the guy you tackled and arrested when I was drunk one day.” Read More