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CPIT appoints new CEO

Wednesday 19 April 2006

CPIT appoints new CEO

Dr Neil Barns has been appointed as the new CEO for Christchurch Polytechnic Institute of Technology (CPIT), and will take up his appointment on Monday 10 July 2006.

Dr Barns is currently CEO of Nelson Marlborough Institute of Technology (NMIT), a position he has held since March 2002. Hector Matthews, the CPIT Council Chairman, says he's delighted that Dr Barns accepted the offer to become CPIT's new CEO.

"Dr Barns has a proven track record as CEO at NMIT', says Matthews. "Neil has applied his academic skills, including a doctorate in business administration, and outstanding stakeholder relationship skills to lead a financially sound and educationally excellent institute of technology that's well regarded by the local and national community."

With substantial changes to polytechnic sector funding expected over the next few years, Matthews says having a CEO aware of both the history and current issues facing the sector was a critical factor in the CPIT Council's decision to appoint Dr Barns.

"Dr Barns is well connected and well regarded at the national level, being Chairman of the Board of the Institutes of Technology and Polytechnics of New Zealand, a position elected by his peers", says Matthews. "He understands the issues confronting the polytechnic sector, which will enable him to take up the reins at CPIT with a minimal period of adjustment."

Matthews says Dr Barns' local knowledge and networks will be a great asset. Prior to being appointed CEO at NMIT, Dr Barns was Dean of the Faculty of Commerce at CPIT from April 2000 to February 2002, and Director of Business Studies at the Christchurch College of Education from July 1995 to March 2000. Dr Barns says he is excited about his new appointment.

"Since I was at the Christchurch College of Education it's been a long-term aspiration of mine to lead CPIT", says Dr Barns. "The time I spent as Dean of the Faculty of Commerce reinforced my belief in CPIT as a national leader in tertiary applied learning. I left to get the necessary experience as a CEO so that one day I could return to lead CPIT. I'm excited that the day has come."

Dr Barns is equally committed to playing a leading role shaping the future of the polytechnic sector, as it evolves in response to changing government funding and community expectations.

"CPIT makes an important contribution to the community by providing important applied vocational learning and second chance education", says Dr Barns. 'We're a practical, 'can do' nation, and the polytechnics and institutes of technology provide the specific technical level of training that makes that attitude and achievement possible."


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