“Marist” or “Malisi” as it known here in Samoa, is an international brand that people associate with high achievement and success.
Founded in 1924 as the Marist Old Boys Union by noted individual like Eugene Paul, O F Nelson and Helg to name just a few, today’s Marist Old Boys Association of Samoa can proudly count among its members many outstanding jurists, businessmen, academics, politicians, public servants, clerics and farmers.
And they can trace their success to the unrelenting determination of the Brothers who instilled in their students the value of hard work, honesty, self reliance and independence.
[Marist Mulivai] This character building aspect of the Marist education was eloquently put by one of our most distinguished old boy, Chief Justice Patu Tiava’aseu Falefatu Sapolu, in his speech at the opening of the new Marist Brothers (Mulivai) School Building last year:
“When I look back at the education that was provided by the Brothers to the students of my time, I remember that the Brothers not only emphasized the value of academic education, but they also developed the character of the students".
[SJC Lotopa compound - 1988] Chief Justice Sapolu went on to talk about the development of the Brothers’ schools and how they depended on no one but themselves.
“In my opinion, this was one of the important contributions by the Marist Brothers School at the time to the development of the character of the students. Self reliance and not dependence on others was implanted by the Marist Brothers School at an early stage in the development of the character of the students.”
“The other important contribution by the Marist Brothers School to the development of the characters of the students at the time was the spirit of cooperation and working together. This was generated by the Brothers, the students and the parents all working together in the [building and] development of the school. When I went to Saint Joseph’s College at Lotopa, this spirit of cooperation was called by the students as [SJC Alafua construction work - 1988] the 'family'”.
“Perhaps it is that spirit acquired during our days with the Marist Brothers at Mulivai and Lotopa [and now Alafua] that is behind the cohesiveness and continuing success of the Marist Brothers Old Boys in their activities.”