Today we celebrate World Environment Day and the achievement of Michael Taiki, an Australia Awards Scholarship graduate from the Master of Environmental Management at Charles Darwin University. Michael graduated in 2020 at Charles Darwin University, proudly receiving the Power and Water Corporation Award for Outstanding Academic Achievement in Environmental Management.
‘It was great being in Australia to learn from academics, Indigenous communities and my peers, but the unexpected highlight was being the recipient of an academic award from the College of Engineering, IT & Environment’ Michael recently stated.
Having returned from studies Michael started work with SPREP (South Pacific Regional Environmental Programme) as the Regional Project Officer under the PacWaste Plus programme. The team under this programme provides support to 15 countries across the Pacific region, including Vanuatu. Michael states ‘the skills I gained through my studies have helped me to be an effective team member of SPREP and also engage meaningfully with countries through communication, collaboration and project management support’.
Michael is grateful to Australia Awards for the opportunity to study for his Master of Environmental Management, as his studies have helped him to be more environmentally friendly. Michael adds ‘I recognise that my actions today will have an impact on future generations. I try to be practical like having a backyard compost bin, planting trees in the garden and making sure to switch off electric appliances when not in use’.
‘Ecosystem Restoration’ is the theme for this year’s World Environment Day and Michael recognises this as an opportunity for families, communities, and workplaces to get proactive. ‘We can adopt a small section of a river, a beach, or a garden to rehabilitate. We should also be planting some plants in the backyard or cleaning up the street in your neighbourhood and constructing rubbish platforms outside every yard. These are little things that we can do to make a difference’.
We congratulate Michael for the recognition award he received through his studies, as he continues to be an inspiration in the promotion of ecosystem restoration and environmental management.