Peter Gemba who hails from Kerowagi in Chimbu province was the recipient of the principal’s award in the 61 graduation of International Technology Institute (ITI).

His journey as many have told of their stories, despite his fallback after the Grade 12 selection in 2019.

He never left behind his leadership qualities while studying the academic course to meet his dream as an accountant.

Peter has been juggling leadership roles since he was still in primary school level at Kimalg Primary in his district.

“I became my class treasurer in my grade six and also representing the students to become the treasurer in my school.”

He then become the school head boy in his grade eight with a majority of votes from the students. He continued to take on leadership roles throughout his high school and secondary school level.

“When I continued on to do my grade nine, ten, eleven and twelve, I became class captain in all those grades. I realised that other students did find the leadership quality from their own perspective.”

His secondary school life aftermath was quite complicated for him to decide the dilemma that posed on him when he was not selected to the institution he wanted to go. As a kid from the village setting, he was determined to find his career pathway and grabbed the opportunity to pursue his qualification at IBSU.

“I finished my Grade 12 at Kerowagi Secondary School in 2019 and I scored good GPA of three and I was aiming of going to universities. Like ITI was not in my mind at the time. But unfortunately, the online selection is so in favor of the grading that we scored from the marks for the subjects. So, I scored to two C in my grading so it must be a reason why I left out,” Mr. Gemba added.

Peter was selected into IBSU in 2020 which he took up Leadership and Management course. Due to COVID19 and high expense of the school fee, he left school after six months and assisted his mother in the informal sector business in the streets of Port Moresby.

“In 2021, I just stayed at home and helped my mom to market at Gordons and all this and went to Abau village in Central Province and sections there which there is good market so I was trying to look into finding  my school fee and all that. And then I saw the course in ITI published in newspaper and I applied.”

Since Peter’s GPA was already above the average grade to attend ITI, he was selected to get Diploma in Business Accounting there with the support and encouragement from some of his seniors.

According to him, his seniors showed great support to inspire and motivate him to take the academic road in ITI.

He left the market with his mother and hunt for his first diploma in early 2022.

As for many other students who have been in leadership roles in their past school, Peter stood out among other students as a leader and spokesperson for the students bringing their issues to the respective authority in the institution despite having prior student representatives. That made Peter earn the trust of the students.

According to Peter, the trust students have for him got him voted as the SRC President for ITI 2023. He continued his leadership journey to his tertiary education level.

The young Kerowagian did his best to host consecutive seminars and trainings to upskills the other students in his term as the president in collaboration with other student leaders.

They also hosted fundraisings to help the students in times of their need rather than waiting for government support.

In the 61st graduation of ITI, Peter was awarded for his best and outstanding leadership performance he portrayed while being a student leader there with the Principal’s Award.

He said the award means a lot to him in recognition for his effort. He dedicated the award to his family and relatives back in his village in Kerowagi.

He is currently employed by ITI and said to focus on this employment till the institution introduces its degree program so he can continue his bachelors program in accounting.

“After this, I will just concentrate on my work. I am currently working with my institution as an assistant in marketing. So, I’m trying to concentrate on my work and just to excel in my work.

My profession, as our chairman already said they will announce the degree program next year for accounting and that I am the fortunate one. So, if they announce the accounting degree, I’ll be furthering my studies and do my bachelor,” Peter said.