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A NorthTec nursing tutor and a recent Bachelor of Nursing graduate were both honoured at last week’s Northland primary healthcare awards.
Tutor Chris Sapwell was a joint winner in the ACE (Acknowledging, Celebrating and encouraging Excellence) awards’ Leadership category, at the ceremony held on Wednesday (13 May) at Northland District Health Board.
Chris was recognised for her outstanding leadership and organisation of the 2014 National Māori Nursing Student hui, held at Te Tii Marae in Waitangi. She received the award together with co-organiser, Northland DHB’s Director of Nursing, Margareth Broodkorn.
The 2014 hui was highly successful and attracted the largest number of students to the annual event, with Waitangi proving a very popular venue.
NorthTec nursing graduate, Laura Gelder, was also honoured, winning the Leadership as a New Graduate award. Laura, who graduated from NorthTec in 2013, now works as a Practice Nurse for Te Hiku Hauora in Kaitaia. Several other NorthTec nursing graduates were also nominated for awards.
Chris Sapwell said her own award was very much about the team which had been involved with organising the hui: “I had the support of the wider NorthTec management and the rest of my nursing colleagues were awesome. Also Marara Shreurs, Te Reo tutor, worked really closely with us on our waiata, so the NorthTec group was well prepared and confident.”
She also commended Laura Gelder, who she described as “confident and enthusiastic”, and said she had definitely found her niche in her role at Te Hiku. The fact that several NorthTec graduates were nominated for awards was very pleasing, and reinforced the fact that the NorthTec nursing programme was on the right track, she added.
The ACE awards are given by Northland’s two primary healthcare organisations, Manaia PHO and Te Tai Tokerau PHO. The awards ceremony was held to coincide with International Nurses Day, celebrated on 12 May, the anniversary of Florence Nightingale’s birth, to mark the service given by nurses around the world.
The NorthTec team of teaching staff – all Registered Nurses themselves – held a special morning tea to celebrate the day. They were joined by NorthTec’s two campus nurses, who run the health centre at the Raumanga site providing services to students and staff.
Chris Sapwell said: “Not only do we have our two brilliant Registered Nurses focusing on student health in our Student Health Centre, we also have 17 experienced and specialist Registered Nurses teaching on the Bachelor of Nursing and Return to Nursing programmes here at NorthTec. Together, the nurses at NorthTec have dedicated more than 450 years collectively to the health and wellbeing of our community.”
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