April 25, 2022
North Central Missouri College recently held a flag-raising ceremony to welcome international students from the Kingdom of Tonga, their families, and the community. NCMC has developed a partnership with Tongan officials and will soon be enrolling international students from the Kingdom of Tonga.
On Friday, April 22, 2022, NCMC held a ceremony to raise the national flag of the Kingdom of Tonga. During the ceremony, remarks were made by President Dr. Lenny Klaver, Vice President of Academic Affairs, Dr. Kristen Alley, and Dean of Instruction Mitch Holder. Also speaking was Viliami Polovili, Talking Chief on behalf of the Tongan King, Melania Mahu’inga, NCMC Tongan student, and Melania’s father, Talo Mahu’inga.
“The flag ceremony demonstrated the sincerity and appreciation of the Tongan community in pursuing an American education through North Central Missouri College,” said Dean of Instruction Mitch Holder. “Through our small class sizes, caring campus community, and affordability, NCMC offers a college experience that leaders of the Tongan community believe will encourage success from their students.”
The Tongan flag is located on the second floor of the library, along with other flags representing the countries of each international student that is or has attended NCMC. Melaina is the first student from the Kingdom of Tonga to enroll at NCMC. NCMC anticipates many more Tongan students to attend in the fall and thereafter.
Melaina said, “NCMC is very friendly with a comfortable and peaceful atmosphere. I’m glad this is my first experience coming to college.”
The Kingdom of Tonga is comprised of several islands in the southwestern Pacific Ocean. Several Tongan leaders have purchased properties in Trenton and the surrounding areas to help the transition of students from the Kingdom of Tonga to North Central Missouri College and aid in their educational pursuits.