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UCOL exceeds 2000 graduates

Media Release

Tuesday 4 March 2014

UCOL exceeds 2000 graduates

UCOL marks a milestone with over 2000 students eligible to graduate with Degrees, Diplomas and Certificates at its annual Graduation Ceremonies next week.

The Ceremonies, on Tuesday 11 and Wednesday 12 March, celebrate the achievements of 2020 graduands across four faculties and is a 20 per cent increase in numbers from the past two years.

UCOL is expecting hundreds of family members and friends to join in the celebrations over the two days.

UCOL Deputy Chief Executive Academic Bonnie Dewart says, “For students, graduation represents personal and financial commitment and hard work which results in the achievement we will recognize over the days of celebrating their success.

As well as celebrating the achievements of students, UCOL Graduation Ceremonies also recognise the contribution of friends and families, and of UCOL academic and support staff.”

Degrees and Diplomas will be conferred at two separate Ceremonies on Tuesday.

A total of 228 students are eligible to Graduate with Degrees and Diplomas from the Humanities and Business, and Trades and Technology faculties at the 10.00amceremony.

The two largest groups are Bachelor of Applied Visual Imaging and Information and Communications Technology, with 39 and 23 Graduands respectively.

During the Tuesday morning ceremony, two UCOL Council awards will be conferred.

Renowned Furniture Designer Noel Brown will be awarded an Honorary Fellowship for his outstanding contribution to the community and InspireNet founder James Watts will be awarded an Honorary Associate for his significant and distinguished contribution to the wider community.

Health Science Faculty Degrees and Diplomas will be conferred at the 2.30pm ceremony. One hundred and nine Bachelor of Nursing graduands form the largest group of students from the Health Science Faculty to Graduate.

Other large Graduating groups include students from the Bachelor of Applied Science (Medical Imaging Technology) and the Bachelor of Exercise and Sport Science programmes.

Youth One Stop Shop (YOSS) Director Trissel Mayor will be awarded the UCOL Council Award of an Honorary Associate for her significant and distinguished contribution to the wider community, at the afternoon ceremony.

Manawatu District Mayor Margaret Kouvelis is the Guest Speaker for both of Tuesday’s ceremonies.

The recipients of Certificate qualifications have their own ceremony to celebrate their achievements, on Wednesday 12 March.

Those eligible to Graduate at this ceremony on Wednesday represent programmes from the Humanities and Business, Trades and Technology, Health Science, and Education Delivery and Innovation Faculties.

UCOL Sports Science Lecturer and top Brazilian Jujitsu exponent Vaughan Antonio is Guest Speaker.

UCOL’s Diploma in Performing Arts and Contemporary Music Performance students will provide entertainment during and after all ceremonies.

At the conclusion of each Ceremony, Graduates, their families, UCOL staff and members of the official UCOL party will form a procession along Broadway Avenue and Princess Street to the Atrium at the UCOL campus.


Notes to reporters:

Background on Graduation Speakers:

Mayor Margaret Kouvelis JP

Margaret was a secondary teacher for over 30 years, heading up Biology, Art and Music Departments. Her work at Freyberg High School establishing the largest Music Department in the country where over 600 students learned instruments led to her becoming a Music Adviser to secondary schools.

Her interest in the professionalism of teachers led her to become an adviser to the Teacher Registration Board and in 2002 she became the first CEO of the NZ Teachers’ Council. Following her time there she established her own education consultancy and won contracts in Beijing and Qatar where she was involved in education reforms.

Margaret is married to Brian, an environmental engineer and they live on their olive grove at Awahuri. Margaret has two children and two grandchildren.

Her decision to run Poppies, a boutique bookstore has proved to be the perfect complement to her life in education. She opened Poppies Feilding in 2006 and a year later opened Poppies Wanganui which ran for three years. Poppies Feilding won best bookseller in the North Island 2010.

Because of her positive engagement with a thriving community, Margaret found herself elected as a Councillor for Manawatu District Council in 2010. Following a by-election in March 2012 she was elected Mayor of the Manawatu District and in 2013 was elected unopposed for a further three year term. Given the exciting potential for the Manawatu Region over the next three years she has decided to sell her Poppies bookstore.

She has initiated 21 Youth Ambassadors for the Manawatu District as part of the Mayors’ Task Force for Jobs. Retaining our youth by creating school to work pathways is part of her overall economic development strategy as a political leader of this region.

Vaughan Antonio

Vaughan Antonio graduated from UCOL in 2005 with a Bachelor of Human Performance (now the Bachelor of Exercise & Sport Science).

After working as a health promotion advisor at Whakapai Hauora, the Manawatu PHO, and part of the athlete support team with the Manawatu Turbos, he joined UCOL as a Lecturer in Exercise and Sport Science in 2010.

Vaughan is an accomplished Brazilian Ju-Jitsu Purple Belt and has represented New Zealand at the Oceania Championships and this year at the world IBJJF Masters in California.

Vaughan uses his passion for his sport as an extra teaching tool. Under his guidance, many of his students have taken up Mixed Martial Arts training and combined it with their studies of biomechanics, athletic training, physical conditioning and nutrition.

Vaughan’s teaching excellence was recognised when he was presented with the Gill Presland Award at the 2012 UCOL Staff Awards.

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