Please click the button below to send your search enquiry to us and we will be in touch with you shortly.
Explore the fees-free programmes available for all learners – whether you have studied before or not!
See how you can get the lowest fees to get the most value for your money and learn about your fees free and fee subsidy options.
Studying doesn’t have to mean giving up your work or home life. Flexible options allows you to choose how you learn.
Irene chose to study Cookery at NorthTec Kaitaia because she found out it was run by her own iwi – Ngati Kuri.
“I started last year in the NZ Certificate in Food and Beverage and continued this year with a NZ Certificate in Cookery because I didn’t want to leave! I love it here! I’ve met so many different people here – you build really good relationships with people and good networks. I was able to get a job at the Beachcomber Restaurant through my tutor’s contacts.
“This programme has really helped to prepare me for the hospitality industry. I’ve been taught so I can walk into the five-star restaurant The Beachcomber and know what I’m doing. I have a thorough base knowledge of everything I need to bring to the workplace because we do practical learning 2 days a week at Kaitaia College.
“The tutor is what makes this programme so special. She has so many different teaching styles and will help us understand something by using humour and then asking us questions. Our class is like a family, we all care about each other and try and motivate each other. This is such a good programme! It is so much fun and everyone makes you feel so welcome."
When Irene’s Grandparents passed away when she was 15, she was determined to do them proud. After attending Te Rangi Aniwaniwa in Kaitaia and then transferring to Mahurangi College – it was a shock for Irene. She persevered and achieved NCEA Level 3 by the time she had completed Year 11.
“My aim is to keep studying. I am passionate about cooking, I like that it brings people closer together and I love that wherever you go you can taste different flavours, depending on where people are from. I want to become a chef and teach others to cook – pass my knowledge to the next generation. I want to travel the world and share my kai with everyone!”
“When I was growing up I wanted to be an auto mechanic in a car workshop and someone recommended NorthTec to me and I thought I would follow it up.
“I really like the course itself. I think it’s really well planned, we go through certain tasks and we complete it term by term and it flies by to be honest.
“My favourite part about the course is the tools! There is not a lack of tools around the workshop. And the tutors - they’re always friendly and here to help. I’m in a small group of people in my class so I get a lot of one-on-one time with the tutors.
“What motivates me now is the opportunity of an apprenticeship at the end of the course and a career path.
“The tutors teach us a full run down of the car engine - we disassemble it, reassemble it, and see all of the components multiple times. You learn the right practices too, you’re not just following what your old man does. We learn the skills needed for when you start working.
“Working on the rally cars for the International Rally that comes to Whangarei is just awesome. It’s a really rare opportunity and gives us the experience and skills we wouldn’t usually get. It’s also really cool to network and meet the big names in the industry!
“Being in the automotive industry is great because it’s hands-on and practical work.
“If anyone is thinking about coming on this course, I would say just do it! It’s fees-free! You have nothing to lose!”
When Curtis Mehana finished school, he tried his hand at automotive engineering and worked in the demolition industry before finding his passion in painting and art.
“I love studying. I’ve already finished an automotive engineering course in Kaitaia and now I am finishing this Painting course, and I want to move to Whangarei next year to start a Bachelor of Visual Arts.”
With his artistic flair, Curtis realised a passion for art when as a class project, the students painted the buildings of the Kaitaia campus.
“This has been my favourite part of this course. It’s hands-on and practical and we’re not always stuck in a classroom. It’s pretty cruisy too!”
Curtis’ determination to finish the course and get his certificate at the end has kept him going.
“My passion is learning and art, that’s what kept me going. Seeing the end result after you’ve finished painting makes it really rewarding as well.”
Curtis says his tutor has taught him a lot throughout the course. “Especially the prep work and how to get a surface ready for painting.”
“This course has prepared me really well for a job, I’d say I could probably walk into one straight after I’ve finished and we’re lucky because our tutor has given us a lot of referrals for different jobs.”
“I was spending 11.5 hours a day in a job I didn’t like - I realised it was time to change and work with something I was passionate about. My girlfriend served as a great role model because she had just landed a job on a cruise ship after studying at NorthTec, so I started researching. My father had some bee keeping experience and I was keen to learn more, so apiculture was my choice.”
“The more you learn about bees, the more you realise there is to learn about them, and I love that our learning is so practical. We get to feed and monitor the bees with our really knowledgeable tutors and we have two hive sites, one in Opononi and one in Kaikohe East. Our course splits into two teams to care for them, and each team rotates the jobs so we all get a go at everything. On wet days we focus on theory.”
“As well as apiculture, we learn about running a small business so that we’ll be able to manage our own hives and by-products if we want to. This was more of a challenge for me, especially the stuff around business plans, business structure and taking care of stakeholders, but it’s given to us in a way we can understand – and it gets our brains working.”
“I’ve been really surprised at how much I’ve learnt about myself through the personal development part of the small business programme, and amazed to think we’d learn that in an apiculture course. It’s so much broader than I imagined and I’m confident now in my abilities. There’s heaps of motivation here from the tutors and from the other students to keep upskilling and I’m loving it. We split up to study small business or apiculture, then swap over, but we’re like one big family and we go on field trips together to some of the apiculture operations run by big companies.”
“We get given a hive when we complete the course and I’m hoping to use the resources from here to eventually build up a small family-orientated business, but first I want to get employment at one of the big companies to gain more experience. The bee industry has some challenges at the moment but education is part of the solution.”
“Now that I’ve found what I love, I’d encourage other young people to find something you’re passionate about. Learn as much as you can, don’t limit your challenges but challenge your limits, put yourself at the top of your field and lift others up when you get there. Consistent hard work leads to success and greatness will follow.”
Deeana Manu has wanted to become a nurse ever since her oldest daughter was born nine years ago. When she moved to Whangarei from Perth, Australia to be closer to her partner’s family, she realised it was now or never. “My daughter has been in and out of the health system her whole life. I wouldn’t have been able to get through it all without the support of the nurses and medical staff - they inspired me to want to pursue a career helping others. Now that my daughter is older and has the care she needs at school, I was able to start my nursing study.
“I worked as an orderly at a hospital in Perth but I knew I couldn’t start my degree there because I didn’t have a support network around me. I have three children so it is really important for me to have the support for all of us while I study. I chose to come to NorthTec because it is so close and convenient to my support network.
“I really love the tutors here on this programme, they are just amazing because you can go to them for help with anything. They make it as easy as possible because they want you to pass and do well. My classmates are just awesome, the support here is just incredible. It’s important for me to get that support because I haven’t been in a classroom for about 15 years and even when I was at school I wasn’t listening, so I was expecting this to be really hard, but I have surprised myself. Having smaller classes has been awesome because we have become such a tight-knit group.
“What is important to me to remember is that I’m not alone – my classmates, tutors and my family are all behind me wanting me to succeed and helping me as much as they can.
“The programme is pretty flexible. We have classes Monday to Wednesday and all of the course content and information is online for us to go through.
“Completing this programme will be a huge influence on my children. They are watching me do this and are already so proud of me. It will affect what they are going to do in their future, and for them to understand that hard work does pays off.
“Getting up in the morning and coming in and having a routine makes me feel like I have a purpose – because I am getting closer to my dream goal. Ultimately, after I am a Registered Nurse, I want to be a Paramedic or a Midwife.”
“I came to New Zealand four years ago from China to study the Bachelor of Sport and Recreation through a sister-city link between the university in China and NorthTec. I was a golf club manager and a track and field athlete in China so I was keen to become more professional in my career, and to broaden my knowledge. The first year was hard because of the different culture and the specialist sport and recreation language, but I have learnt and adapted now. ”
“I love that we have a lot of practicum in this programme and we get the opportunity to actually do what we learn out there in the community. It’s good for us as students and good for the community so it’s a win-win. For my co-ordination paper I’m working at NorthTec International Department to encourage Chinese students to be more active.”
“I’ve learned that I’m more adaptable than I expected. In New Zealand a lot of Chinese stay within their own group but I’m keen to find kiwi friends and tutors, and that has really helped my English and given me more choices both for my career and personally.”
“There is a lot more community work in New Zealand than in China and I like that, so when I finish my degree I’ll choose an area to start my career. At the moment I’m keen to become a co-ordinator with Sports Northland, or in a gym, or in the police.”
Explore Study Options