NorthTec Hui helps students start off strong
Last month NorthTec held a Pre-Start Whānaungatanga Hui, welcoming first time Māori, Pacific, and Disabled learners to campus and connecting them to Te Ara Poutama (Student Support Services) team and all student services available prior to starting study.
The hui was held in NorthTec’s marae, Te Puna o Te Mātauranga, where students and whānau were welcomed on with pōwhiri.
Around 31 ākonga and 13 whānau and support people attended. A team of 18 kaimahi took care of them for the day. The rōpū was split into 5 smaller groups and moved through a series of workshops to familiarise them with locations on campus and introduce them to NorthTec’s ākonga (learner) support teams.
“He waka eke noa,” says Huria Bruce-Iri, student services manager and co-planner of the hui. “We are all in this together. We wanted to help introduce ākonga to all the support that is available to them throughout their studies.”
Each team visited the library where they can also find help with information and technology issues, Te Whare Hauora (the health and wellbeing building), the Student Support Team and Student Voice, our student representatives and advocates. The new students were also given detailed information on the Academic and Kaupapa Māori Wellbeing Model of Care as well as receiving any help they needed to finalise their enrolment.
NorthTec Te Tai Tokerau Wānanga hopes the hui will enable the targeted learners to easily find and access support services if or when they need them throughout their time of study.
A follow up hui is planned for the students prior to the mid semester break, to catch up with ākonga, ask how their first weeks of semester have been, and identify any further help they might need going forward.
“The day was a huge success,” says Hoana Paul, Programme Manager of Equity and Māori success at NorthTec. “Not just for our ākonga but for our kaimahi too. We need to do things differently and this is one of the ways we can make that change.”
From the many highlights of the day, ākonga expressed their appreciation for the opportunity, and the approachability of kaimahi. Lisa Erceg, our new Kaiawhina for Student Voice was a fantastic Master of Ceremonies (MC) and lead out the day. Students said Lisa was enthusiastic, approachable, and endlessly helpful.
Participants were also able to register any enrolment aspects they felt could be improved on. Staff will then use this information to improve NorthTec’s learner engagement and experience for 2023.
The hui was planned in alignment with Te Pūkenga’s ‘Practices with Potential’ kaupapa with a primary focus on removing barriers to education for Māori, Pacific, and Disabled learners.