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New Te Wānanga o Aotearoa CEO Jim Mather welcomed

New Te Wānanga o Aotearoa CEO Jim Mather welcomed

October 21, 2013

New Te Wānanga o Aotearoa chief executive Jim Mather will focus on getting fully up to speed with the business and the key priorities for the nationwide tertiary education provider in his first weeks in the job.

Mr Mather was welcomed as leader of one of the country's largest tertiary institutions at a well-attended pōwhiri held at the institution's head office in Te Awamutu today.

The former chief executive of Māori Television said he was excited by the opportunity to lead the next phase of progress for Te Wānanga o Aotearoa.

"Education is a key driver for changing lives and improving the opportunity for the people of Aotearoa," he said. "Te Wānanga o Aotearoa has a crucial role to play in lifting the educational and employment outcomes for New Zealand.

"I am grateful and humbled by the opportunity to help lead this change and to be part of improving the lives of the tens of thousands who seek to achieve their educational aspirations with our institution each year.

Mr Mather acknowledged the many people who had worked and supported Te Wānanga o Aotearoa to get it to where it is today.

"There are so many, too many to mention and thank individually for the immense value they have provided in supporting Te Wānanga o Aotearoa. I would however like to acknowledge my predecessors, founder and inaugural Tumuaki, Rongo Wetere, who started the institution's journey, and Te Pouhere Bentham Ohia, who provided inspirational leadership for the past seven years."

Mr Mather said the priority initially was to meet with key managers, kaimahi, and stakeholders and to travel to the institution's main campuses across its five regions to get a full knowledge and understanding of all facets of the organisation.

"I am grateful for the strong team to support me at Te Wānanga o Aotearoa to help ensure a smooth transition. I will take the appropriate amount of time to ensure I am aware of the key priorities and focuses for our business and to identify where we can continue to improve and refine our services and offerings."

Te Wānanga o Aotearoa chairman Richard Batley said he was pleased to welcome someone with Mr Mather's experience and track record into the role.

"Jim has achieved impressive gains in his nine years leading Māori Television. I look forward to seeing the benefits of his leadership at Te Wānanga o Aotearoa," Mr Batley said.

Mr Batley acknowledged the excellent work of interim co-chief executives Hinerangi Raumati-Tu'ua and Turi Ngatai.

"Hinerangi and Turi have provided excellent leadership and focus for Te Wānanga o Aotearoa while we have waited for Jim to start. It is a privilege to have such depth in our management team to be able to have called on them to manage the business for the last four months".

Te Wānanga o Aotearoa Background
Established in 1984, Te Wānanga o Aotearoa employs more than 1300 staff and provides education to more than 36,000 students annually across the country.

Te Wānanga o Aotearoa is one of New Zealand's largest tertiary education providers, offering a comprehensive range of certificate to Masters degree level qualifications to New Zealanders of all ages and walks of life.

Operating from over 120 locations throughout the country, Te Wānanga o Aotearoa provides a unique environment aimed at overcoming barriers to learning, and to meeting the needs of the communities its serves.

Guided by Māori principles and values, Te Wānanga o Aotearoa takes great pride in an inclusive learning environment, as well as a depth and diversity of courses which include small business, teaching, computing, social work, Māori performing arts and te reo Māori.

Te Wānanga o Aotearoa has provided a vibrant alternative within the New Zealand tertiary education sector for 25 years, enhancing the skills and employment opportunities of more than 300,000 students.


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