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Faatuai and Fatilua Memorial Scholarship

1 winner$1,000
Next Application Deadline
Nov 25, 2023
Next Winners Announced
Dec 25, 2023
Education Level
Undergraduate, Graduate
Recent scholarship winners
Eligibility Requirements
3.0 or higher
Education Level:
Undergraduate or graduate student
Pacific Islander

Faatuaiitaua Silafau Satiu and Fatilua Satiu were loving parents, grandparents and great grandparents. She was a tough registered nurse from Papa Puleia, Savaii and He was a strict school teacher from Salimu-Musumusu, Fagaloa.

From a small island of Western Samoa in the South Pacific, together they raised a family to serve God and to help others. Both determined to get their children to the U.S for a better future they embodied love, faith and the fa’asamoa.

The push for education amongst the youth is a huge part of their legacy they leave behind. This scholarship is rewarded to a Pacific Islander who is determined to live up to their full potential. Faatuai and Fatilua’s legacy live on through this recipient and those whose lives they’ve touched.

Salamo 103:1

“Lo‘u agaga e, ia e fa‘amanu atu i le ALI‘I, o mea uma fo‘i o i totonu ia te a‘u, ia fa‘amanu i lona suafa paia.“

“O le ala i le pule o le tautua” The path to leadership is service.

“E lele le toloa, ae ma’au lava i le vai” - A duck will fly away but will always return to it’s nest/ waters.

Pacific Islander undergraduate and graduate students are eligible to apply if they have a 3.0 GPA. To apply, write about what it means to you to be a Pacific Islander attending college and why you think you are deserving of this scholarship award.

Selection Criteria:
Essay, Passion, Boldest Profile
Published July 20, 2023
Essay Topic

What does it mean to you to be a Pacific Islander attending college? Why do you think you should receive this scholarship?

400–600 words

Winning Application

Letiunasema Nuusila
Cornell UniversityITHACA, NY
As I stepped onto the cold grounds of Cornell University, I carried with me my aiga, my Fa'asamoa, my faith, and traditions, which my life was built upon and revolved around. I was born and raised in American Samoa, and my family resided on the eastern side of the island of Tutuila, in the village of Alofau. My brother and I were raised by my grandparents, who were ministers of the Congregational Christian Church in Samoa and American Samoa when they moved from Samoa to American Samoa. My grandparents instilled in me the principles and values of Fa'asamoa, and I have since implemented them into my life and have carried them with pride in all I do. My Fa'asamoa is a part of my identity, which I proudly cherish. Now, attending an institution far from home with a very small population of Samoans and Pacific Islanders, my identity is more important than ever. Being a Pacific Islander in college is not just a matter of attending classes; it's an intricate dance between preserving my roots and embracing higher education's growth opportunities. A deep connection to my cultural heritage is at the core of my passion and pursuit of knowledge. In college, my identity becomes a beacon, guiding and motivating me through the several paths I will take towards the future. I bring to the classroom a different perspective shaped by the values and traditions of my Pacific Island heritage. I offer unique viewpoints that contribute to diverse ideas, enriching the educational experience for myself and my peers. Yet, attending college as a Pacific Islander and a person new to this environment can be challenging; it's like sailing through uncharted waters. The academic landscape is very different from back home. The cultural shock, not being able to speak my native language, familiarizing myself with varying styles of teaching, and the feeling of excelling academically at times overwhelm me. However, I have to remind myself occasionally that I am a descendant of courageous and resilient people. I am the product of my Fa'asamoa, a son of God, I have worked tirelessly to get where I am from, and my journey is just beginning. Just like how resilient my people are, I am adaptable and can overcome whatever obstacles I may face. I have started to write my journals in Samoan, reconnected with my love for Pacific literature, and do things that can connect me with my culture so that I don't lose touch with my identity. I have been blessed to attend an institution such as Cornell because I have forged new friendships with students, faculty, and staff. I have found a community that is eager to learn and is appreciative of my culture and heritage, and it makes my heart rejoice as I can share my culture with others. College as a Pacific Islander can be challenging, but we must remember that we are a resilient and multiskilled people. We must not forget to connect with our identity, which guides us through our troubles and reconnects us to our families and heritage. I believe that I am deserving of this scholarship because of my steadfast dedication to academic success, strong community activity, and demonstrated fortitude in the face of adversity. With this financial assistance, I'm committed to achieving my goals, contributing to my community, and using my degree to make a significant impact.


When is the scholarship application deadline?

The application deadline is Nov 25, 2023. Winners will be announced on Dec 25, 2023.

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