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Community Briefs

compiled by Samoa News staff


Supervisors who will be in charge of overseeing the more than 800 youth who have applied for jobs under the Summer Youth Employment Program (SYEP) went through an orientation session this past Wednesday.

According to Dept. of Human Resources (DHR) officials, approximately 810 young people, between 16 and 24 years old, have applied for employment during the summer months and as of yesterday, a total of 65 sites were confirmed.

These include government departments, agencies, and businesses in the private sector.

Even a representative from the US Department of Labor was present during the orientation session, which served to explain the importance of keeping accurate time cards, and the expectations that are in place for both the employers and the young people.

Governor Lolo has already told department and agency heads that SYEP participants should not be running office errands and making coffee but instead, should be learning the ins and outs of being employed in the workplace. What's important is that students have hands-on experience in a working environment, Lolo said.

The official opening for the SYEP is next Monday, June 26

According to the fiscal year 2017 budget, a total of $250,000 is allocated for the Summer Youth Employment Program, under the Special Programs budget category which is administered by the Governor’s Office.


            The University of Arizona, Center for Integrative Medicine has announced the availability of four new scholarships - $7,500 each - for the Fellowship in Integrative Medicine class that starts this fall, thanks to "generous gifts from our donors this year," the school announced. 

            "Physicians, advanced nurse practitioners, pharmacists (PharmDs), and physician assistants who have been accepted to the Fellowship (you can still apply now) are eligible to apply for one of these scholarships if they commit to joining the Fall 2017-2019 class."

            The Fellowship in Integrative Medicine is a 1,000-hour, two-year distance learning program. Physician graduates are eligible to take the exam for board certification in Integrative Medicine.

            Created by Andrew Weil, MD in 2000, the Fellowship has achieved international recognition as the leading integrative medical education program in the world.

            Applications for the scholarships are due by July 15, 2017.

            "The University of Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine is leading the transformation of health care by training a new generation of health professionals and by empowering individuals and communities to optimize health and wellbeing through evidence-based, sustainable, integrative approaches."

            Log on to <> for more information.          


            A total of 55 local residents have been hired by Norbest LLC, to work in their Utah facility. Norbest is a company that started as a producer-owned marketing cooperative called Utah Poultry Producers Association in 1923.

            By the 1970s, the company led the way in pre-based turkeys, bone-in breasts, boneless roasts, and other convenient items. Today, Norbest is "Utah's largest turkey producing and processing company."

            Company official Kelly Murie said they came here with the intention of hiring 30 of the territory's "best workers" but instead, they are leaving with 55. "We anticipate that we'll have that many or more in the next two months," he said.

            According to Murie, their recruiting trip came after they heard about the closure of one of the canneries and because local residents are American nationals, it would be easy for them to travel to the US to work.

            He said they received a total of 175 applications and 55 have been chosen for the first trip, set to depart the territory on July 12th.

            Murie explained that the company provides roundtrip airfare tickets for the newly hired, which will be repaid in $50 installments per paycheck. In addition, the company offers full benefits — medical, dental, and vision - and the option to participate in 401K.

Housing is free for the first three months and afterwards, the workers will be charged $200 per person.

"This is just to express our gratitude to the island of American Samoa and for the goodness of the people, who have been so generous to us," he concluded.


 Washington, D.C. –Thursday, Congresswoman Aumua Amata, announced today that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has awarded American Samoa a grant of nearly $1.1 million.

 “Our coral reefs are the lifeblood of our oceans. These funds will assist the conservation program to ensure that our reefs are vibrant and healthy,” stated Amata. “We must all do our part to make sure that the ocean which provides us with so much, can continue to do so for generations to come, and the programs that these funds will support are focused on that goal,” continued the Congresswoman.

 American Samoa will receive the grant over the course of two years; and it will be used to administer the Coral Reef Conservation Program, which support local coral reef conservation programs, long-term coral reef monitoring; coral reef education and outreach programs; and conservation projects.

 “I want to thank those NOAA officials, who saw the need and importance for this funding. I would also like to thank Director Va’amua Henry Sesepasara for his hard work in leading the Department of Marine & Wildlife Resources, and for his work in obtaining this important funding for our island,” concluded Amata.