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Studying doesn’t have to mean giving up your work or home life. Flexible options allows you to choose how you learn.
“It’s so valuable doing work placement while I’m studying because I get that extra experience. So I am able to go out in the community and apply what I am learning, and to be able to meet people while I’m studying. I get that first-hand experience and gain more knowledge myself. I really think it’s going to help me get a job after my studies.”
“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!”
“I knew I’d like this course but I like it even more than I thought. I kept getting into trouble at school so eventually Mum decided to pull me out and I moved home to the farm and started studying sports but it wasn’t me. We lived on a farm and I liked it, but I didn’t know anything about it so when I saw a brochure on this course I signed up.”
“The best part of the course so far is moving the animals, learning to ride the quad bike, fixing fences, milking, and learning about stock rotation and how much to feed them. We learn by actually doing it, plus we have 1 theory day a week.”
“We also learn from the other students when we work together, and we’re all gaining confidence and experience. I’m not sure what I want to do when I finish the course but I might work in dairy farming. I’ve learnt to give things a go and at NorthTec they’ll help you get through.”
Stacey Roy has always had a passion for cars. She left school and went on to complete her cooking qualification at the Culinary Institute in Kerikeri and had a successful career as a chef. As she started her own catering business, she wanted to keep herself busy so followed her passion and enrolled in NorthTec’s NZ Certificate in Automotive Engineering in Kaitaia.
“I love this course. We all get on really well and have a diverse range of skill sets – we help each other out. The tutor here is such a good teacher, he gets around to every student to make sure they have everything they need. He even helps us to find work experience outside of the course.
“This course is really hands-on. It’s only three days a week and we work in a workshop on real cars. These cars are brought to us by people around Kaitaia who might not be in a position to afford taking them to a mechanic. We work on them, gain the skills we need to and then they bring us in biscuits or coffee and we all happy. It gives us great satisfaction to see those cars we have worked on out in the community!
“The course has made me so much more confident. It has taught me to work on different makes and models of cars and just reassured me in the skills that I already had. It’s definitely made me work-ready.
“I live locally and wanted to come to NorthTec because I didn’t want to move anywhere – it’s great having somewhere close so I don’t have to worry about accommodation or travel or anything like that.
“I love the problem-solving side to mechanics, sometimes it goes all straightforward and it’s easy and that’s fine, but sometimes you need to really think about what you’re doing and if something isn’t quite right, thinking of a way to do it better. I also like being a woman in a male-dominated industry.
“The best part about studying at NorthTec is that there is a lot of support for a lot of things. There is an understanding that people have stuff going on in their lives outside of the course. There’s always a way to work around your life and your needs.
“I’ve been offered some work experience with a mobile mechanic that works on heavy machinery and I think that’s a great avenue to go down because in Kaitaia, the heavy transport industry is quite big.”
Patricia came to NorthTec to support her two boys with a dream of owning her own transporting company.
“I’ve always loved driving and after completing my Class 2 Driving Certificate with the Salvation Army, I was able to complete my Class 4 Driving Certificate by completing this course. Some people tell me I could have completed my Class 4 a lot faster, but with NorthTec’s course I have so much more knowledge about the trucks themselves and how everything works which is a massive advantage.
“NorthTec’s tutors also have great connections and networks with people locally and throughout New Zealand that can help us get a foot in the door of the industry as students. I was able to gain some work experience with Manganui Logging Trucks, which is an invaluable experience for me.
“I just know this is where my future is – in driving and starting my own trucking company, I can see the end goal in sight and I’m going on to complete my Class 5 certificate as well.
“The best part has to be the driving throughout the course, we do a lot of practical work, because that’s the nature of what we are studying. It’s great being part of the class - we all study together and have shared lunches - it’s a really nice family-orientated environment here at the Kaitaia campus.”
“I was wanting more meaningful work and had been in the north about 18 months doing part-time work until I decided I wanted to study horticulture. It is values based, hands-on and focuses on sustainability which is necessary for future generations. It’s fascinating to me. I was originally from the city and came up here to be nearer family, so the content is all new to me and I’m learning a completely different lifestyle.”
“With what I’m learning, it’s exciting to think about what the future holds – both as an individual and for our greater culture. I’m surprised at how broad the course is and that we can apply what we learn to any aspect of our lives – at home, at work and even spiritually.”
“We have a variety of students in our class all with different views but our common interest puts us all in the same bubble. It’s a very healing environment to be in and the tutor has a real passion and knowledge.”
“At the moment I’m living at home but the course is giving me ideas of how to run my own farm and to share that with children and social groups. For me the outcome will be more about lifestyle than career, and when I finish level 4 I’m keen to talk to schools and young people about waste and environmental issues.”
“I want to make the most of what’s on offer here which includes the support network and community as well as the study, and I’ll see what happens after that.”
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