Why Fiji Matters

William Strachan

Here is a conversation that I have all the time:

Person: “Why are you in Fiji?”

Me: “I’m going to school.”

Person: “What are you studying?”

Me: “I’m doing an MBA.”

Person: “You’re doing an MBA in Fiji?!?”

Yes, I am completing a Masters of Business Administration at the University of the South Pacific in the Republic of the Fiji Islands.

Why you ask?

There are three reasons:

  1. Because as a District Rotary Ambassadorial Scholar I was able to select a host country within which to complete a year of education, and Fiji seemed like an ideal place to do so.
  2. Because I wanted to get an MBA, but I could not afford to finance an education at a mainstream mid or high-level institution (e.g. IMD); I did not have the standard corporate experience required; and I did not have a 90-something percentile GMAT score.
  3. Because the focus of my scholarship is the cross-cultural experience gained from living abroad for a year more than it is the academics, so the MBA was not all that mattered.

That was my justification coming in, and it still is. I have, however, managed to gain additional perspective in the five months since I arrived here. I have come to learn that completing my MBA in Fiji will carry so much more value than I have already described because, believe it or not, Fiji matters. By this I mean that Fiji matters as a subject of analysis. The country is a unique economic, social, and political case study the study of which can shed light on a number of larger issues. I will provide such an examination in an exclusive three-part series on MTG to which this is the introduction.

Unique and educated perspectives – here on MTG.