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78 new constables to hit the street

78 new constables to hit the street

Wednesday, 24 September 2014 - 4:49pm

National News

Seventy-eight new constables will graduate from The Royal New Zealand Police College in Wing 286 tomorrow. Their wing patron is the former Race Relations Commissioner, Joris de Bres.

Wing 286 graduating constables have come to The Royal New Zealand Police College from all over the country, and all over the world. They join New Zealand Police with a broad range of backgrounds and life achievements. Some former occupations include nursing, commercial diver, specialised welder, and plumber, gasfitter & drainlayer. Many have tertiary qualifications in fields as varied as animal behaviour, cultural anthropology, chemistry, fitness, professional cookery, and computer applications, to name a few.

There is an international flavour to the wing with members’ countries of birth spanning the globe, including Australia, South Africa, Scotland, India, England, Kenya and Romania.

Wing 286 has a strong connection with our emergency service partners and with defence, as several members have served as volunteer fire fighters or been deployed overseas with the NZ Defence Force.

New wing for ex-serviceman
Constable Michael Skates received his new ‘wing’ 18 weeks ago when he arrived at The Royal New Zealand Police College. For 16 years, Constable Skates was a member of the Royal New Zealand Air Force before he left at the end of 2013, at the rank of Sergeant, to join the New Zealand Police.

During his career, Constable Skates was deployed to a number of locations including East Timor, Timor Leste, Sinai, the Middle East and Afghanistan.

“While I enjoyed my time in the Air Force, I have always had a dream of joining the New Zealand Police,” says Constable Skates. “I’m looking forward to the next stage of my life with a career in police, and the ability to give back to my local community.”

Constable Skates has excelled in his wing, winning the Minister’s Award in recognition of achievement for First in Wing and the Section Achievement Award for Section Four.

The Minister’s Award recognises the top student after the collation of all course assessments, while the Section Achievement Award recognises an individual from each section who, in the collective view of the members of the section and the wing instructors, made the greatest contribution to the overall success of the team.

Fighting fires of a new kind
Three graduating constables of Wing 286 have fought fires in the past, but are looking to help put out some different ones as they start their careers in the New Zealand Police.

Graduating Constables Christie Welton, Katherine Raines and Michael Nepia have all worked as volunteer fire fighters back in their home towns.

Constable Nepia has always seen the correlation between the values of the New Zealand Fire Service and the New Zealand Police, but decided to take on a career in Police to challenge himself and give back to his community.

“For me it’s about my whanau, my friends and my community,” says Constable Nepia. “It’s about making sure they can continue to go about their lives and have the knowledge they will be looked after and feel safe.”

Two of the constables have been volunteers from a young age, with Constable Welton joining when she was a teenager. “Becoming a volunteer at 18 has helped me to grow as a person and to build the skills it takes to be a successful police officer.”

“I know there will be some hard times throughout my career, but I also know I will always have my fellow wing members and colleagues who will have my back, just like my former colleagues in the Fire Service.”

Constable Raines is also looking forward to the challenge of policing. “While I have worked in some pretty tough situations as a volunteer fire fighter already, I know a career in the New Zealand Police is going to continuously challenge me.”

“But I’m looking forward to the challenge because I know that every day I go to work, I’m helping to change the lives of others by preventing crime, supporting victims, and ensuring the community feels safe and is safe.”

Wing 286 award winners

• Minister’s Award for First in Wing was awarded to Constable Michael Skates, posted to Central. Constable Skates was also awarded the Section Four Achievement Award.

• Commissioner’s Award for Second in Wing was awarded to Constable Kimberley Muncaster, posted to Waikato. Constable Muncaster was also awarded the Prevention Award (for frontline skills and prevention practices) and the Mobility and Technology Award (for information technology use and file preparation). The Prevention Award is supported by the Crimestoppers Trust.

• Patron’s Award for Third in Wing was awarded to Constable Greer Chrisp, posted to Waitemata. Constable Chrisp was also awarded the Academic Award (for academic achievement).

• The Response Award (for tactical skills and safe practices) was awarded to Constable Nicholas Kalivati, posted to Wellington. Constable Kalivati was also awarded the Physical Training and Defensive Tactics Award (for physical training and defensive tactics skills) and the Driver Training and Road Policing Practice Award (for driving skills and safe road policing practices).

• The Firearms Training Award (for firearms skills and safe practices) was awarded to Constable Katherine Raines, posted to Wellington.

Police Association Awards for Section Achievement
These are awarded to an individual from each section who, in the collective view of the members of the section and the wing instructors, made the greatest contribution to the overall success of the team.

Section One Constable Andrew Duff, posted to Eastern.

Section Two Constable Matthew Hargreaves, posted to Southern.

Section Three Constable Jacob Manaton, posted to Northland.

Section Four Constable Michael Skates, posted to Central.

Graduation will take place at The Royal New Zealand Police College on Thursday 25 September at 2:00pm. The ceremony will be attended by Police Commissioner Mike Bush and Wing 286 Patron Joris de Bres.


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