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PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (February 19, 2001 - The National/PINA Nius Online)---The entire student population at the University of Papua New Guinea will soon have access to computer facilities and e-mail.

One-hundred-twenty Pentium III personal computers have been purchased at a cost of K 330,000 (US$ 105,600) by the administration to ensure this, said Pro Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Tom Wagner.

He said the new computers will replace the old ones in the student laboratories and an additional laboratory will be established in the library to increase student access to computers.

As a result, all the students on campus will have access to electronic mail and other Internet software.

The confidence of parents in the University of Papua New Guinea has seen the return of national students studying in overseas schools and a rise in the number of women pursuing studies.

Twenty-eight students who studied in Australia and New Zealand under the respective government’s scholarships have been accepted as new enrollees at UPNG this year - the single biggest number of new intakes from overseas schools in recent years.

Vice-chancellor Professor Les Eastcott said this was "a vote of confidence" in the nation's top school and its goal to be the "premier University of the Pacific."

It directly adds to UPNG's status as the top institution in PNG, he said, adding that overseas students bring different strengths because of the environments they are exposed to while studying overseas.

They will add flavor to the quality of graduates produced by the University of Papua New Guinea.

"Most importantly, these students could have chosen to continue with their studies in host countries (Australia and New Zealand) but decided to return and complete studies here," he said. He added, "this is a bonus because parents now have confidence in UPNG."

For additional reports from The National, go to PACIFIC ISLANDS REPORT News/Information Links: Newspapers/The National (Papua New Guinea).

Pacific Islands News Association (PINA) Website: http://www.pinanius.org 

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