Oil Search has a long history of supporting PNG students to complete tertiary studies and since 2003 has sponsored over 800 PNG students. Robbie Yekili from Oil Search’s Community Affairs team was one of them. With Oil Search’s assistance he completed his Diploma in Education Primary In-service (DEPI) in 2005 and went on to graduate with a Bachelor of Education in 2006. Robbie then also completed an Honours Degree in 2008 at Goroka University.
Oil Search’s financial assistance whilst he was studying allowed Robbie and his wife to buy the first computer he’d ever used and connect it to the internet – helping him with his research and assignments. This had a positive impact on his grades and helped him do well amongst his fellow students, many of whom had more education opportunities growing up.
Robbie believes that access to further education really does open the door to further opportunity. His studies have enabled him to work in a variety of roles including as a primary school teacher, a lecturer at Teachers College, a landowner company representative, and a lands and community affairs officer on the PNG LNG Project.
Now an OSL Community Affairs Officer, he is able to continue to contribute towards the advancement of local communities by using his teaching training and experience to resolve and remediate community conflicts, and manage community development projects. Robbie is proud he is able to support his family and provide his son a better education than he had.