Appointment of new CE

20 Jun 2016

Tai Poutini Polytechnic (TPP) has appointed an academic with experience in the Australia and New Zealand tertiary sectors to lead the institute while recruitment gets underway for a permanent chief executive. TPP Council Chair Graeme McNally says the appointment of Alex Cabrera as Acting Chief Executive for the remainder of 2016 gives the Polytechnic confidence and certainty as it looks to recruit a permanent leader. “Alex is a skilled manager, with experience in the New Zealand and Australian tertiary education sector. His strengths are in the areas of building team capability, engagement and organisation performance. “We are very pleased to welcome Alex to the Polytechnic and the Council looks forward to working with him over the coming months.” Alex Cabrera was the Chief Executive of Aoraki Polytechnic until its recent merger with Christchurch Polytechnic Institute of Technology to create the Ara Institute. He was the Deputy Chief Executive at Aoraki Polytechnic from 2011 to 2012, the Executive Director Planning and Development at the University of Canberra in Australia from 2007 to 2011 and the Operations Manager at Weltec from 2004 to 2007. Graeme McNally says that Alex Cabrera will work closely with the Polytechnic Council, staff and the wider community over the coming months. He will divide his time between the Polytechnic’s Greymouth, Auckland and Christchurch campuses.

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Sculptures set to “blow community away”

8 Jun 2016

 Sculptures set to “blow community away” Buller district residents and visitors can expect to see an exciting series of sculptures pop-up in locations across the region in the coming months. The hard work, sweat and artistry of two weeks’ solid stone carving culminated in a successful unveiling event for the Kawatiri Sculpture Symposium on Friday night (20 May 2016). Over the previous two week, Tai Poutini Polytechnic students joined local and international artists to produce a series of carvings for the West Coast community to enjoy. The event, run by the Buller Arts and Recreation Trust and supported by the Polytechnic, aims to revitalise public spaces across the district by challenging artists to produce works for public display in a demanding environment. Buller Community Development Facilitator Pete Howard says it has been an amazing experience to watch students work alongside established artists to produce some stunning works of art. “The students have really stepped-up in what has been a mammoth challenge. The series of public works will be a fantastic showcase of the skills we’ve all watched in real-time over the two weeks. We are finalising locations now and people can expect so see them installed within the next three to six months.” The two-week symposium saw sculptors...

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Outdoor Education Service Project

7 Jun 2016

Service Project and Natural History Lessons 22 Certificate in Outdoor Education students headed up to Punakaiki on Tuesday 24th May to plant 450 native trees and do some flax maintenance at the Punakaiki Coastal Restoration Project. It is an impressive long-term project between Conservation Volunteers, DOC, Rio Tinto, and Lincoln University that has been running since 2008. So far they have had 7580 volunteer days and planted 132,455 trees - plus 450 trees that we planted yesterday.  

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Sculptures capture revitalisation

10 May 2016

Polytechnic students are joining local and international artists in a fortnight-long public art symposium. The local community will be able to watch the limestone carvers in action from May 9 to 15, as more than a dozen artists gather in central Westport to display their skills. The Polytechnic is a presenting partner of the Kawatiri Sculpture Symposium, which is being run by the Buller Arts and Recreation Trust with the aim of revitalising public spaces across the Buller district. Artists are being asked to explore the theme of “rejuvenation” during the symposium, exploring the history of the Buller region alongside its natural fauna and wildlife. The completed works will be placed in public viewing spaces across the district. The symposium’s origin was a gift from former student Carl Platt to the Buller district: a carved limestone seat. The Polytechnic is pleased to support the symposium and have students involved in the creative event. An unveiling event and public auction of a small number of works will be held on the evening of Friday 20 May. The community is invited to view the symposium in progress and attend the unveiling night. Dates: Monday 9 to Friday 20 May, 2016. Location: 8a Rintoul Street, Westport (opposite Caltex Diesel Stop / TNL Freight yard). Public...

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Adapting to meet demands of outbound China tourism market

22 Feb 2016

Adapting to meet demands of outbound China tourism market could have huge positive impact for West Coast economy Professor Wolfgang Georg Arlt Director of the China Outbound Tourism Research Institute (COTRI) in Hamburg, Germany is convinced that adapting its tourism offering to meet the needs of visitors from China could have huge benefits for the West Coast economy. Professor Arlt delivered his message at the West Coast Development Think Tank hosted by Tai Poutini Polytechnic in Greymouth on 16-17 February. “The Chinese outbound tourism market has grown exponentially from 10 million border crossings in 2000 to a projected 151 million crossings for 2016. Those visitors will spend an estimated US$220 billion in 2016. That is potentially great news for the West Coast, given that there has been an increase of more than 150% in Chinese visitors to New Zealand during the last four years.” Professor Arlt warns, however, that New Zealand and the West Coast have to cater for the specific expectations of its Chinese visitors to take advantage of this opportunity. “Visitors from China regard travel as an investment rather than as a leisure activity. The ability to travel brings prestige to the traveller and is a confirmation of status amongst their peers. For the West Coast to...

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Splore 2016

11 Feb 2016

The Music and Audio Institute of New Zealand (MAINZ) is bringing live sound to the annual Splore Festival this February. MAINZ has been working with Splore since its inception in 1998, providing the sound system for the Living Lounge Zone. Splore is a celebration of art, music, performance, and dance, held from 19-20 February, at the beautiful Tapapakanga Regional Park on the shores of the Firth of Thames. Tony McMaster, MAINZ HOD Live Sound and Event Production, says it’s great to be doing the business again and bringing outstanding production values to one of the most popular summer festivals in New Zealand. “This year, because of the timing, we’re going to involve our new Live Sound and Event Production students in the project and do a class field trip to set the system up on the Thursday prior to the festival.  “This will enable our fresh students to see and experience the planning and actual nuts and bolts set-up for this popular event which is now held annually.” Tony says that this year the amazing Daryl Tapsell, Programme Leader MAINZ Audio Engineering, will be mixing at front-of-house, while monitor mixing duties will be provided by Pounamu O’Brien (Live Sound graduate 2014). “The festival provides opportunities for staff and graduates to...

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Polytechnic plans new culinary programme

11 Dec 2015

Tai Poutini Polytechnic is redeveloping its culinary programmes to bring a new, uniquely West Coast flavour to its cookery training. General Manager West Coast Operations Rob van Lent says the aim is to provide a new suite of courses that reflects the vibrant West Coast tourism market, meets the expectations of visitors and the local demand for skilled chefs. “This is a great opportunity to work with our community partners and develop a training programme that will meet the needs of the local community, the wider industry and our students. “We are planning to create a high quality programme that is recognised and valued by students and industry, not just on the West Coast, but nationally and around the world. We want a programme that has synergies with other TPP developments that aim to build on the West Coast brand, our growing international relationships, and our focus on excellence in customer service and visitor experiences. “We want to get the new programme up and running as soon as possible, but we will take some time to research and plan to make sure we get it right,” Mr van Lent says. To ensure that this develops quickly and innovatively, Mr Ian Hooker has agreed to lead the development team. He...

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Polytechnic programme in demand with US students

29 Sep 2015

Polytechnic programme in demand with US students Demand is high for the next planned venture between Tai Poutini Polytechnic (TPP) and a top United States business school. Last summer, TPP hosted 14 students from the prestigious Wharton Business School to take part in a New Zealand “Coast-to-Coast” themed leadership training course. Every year as part of their training, Wharton students take part in a series of “ventures” in locations all around the world. Director Experiential Leadership Centre Dave Ritchie says the venture was so successful that 110 Wharton students have already joined the waitlist for the next TPP-led course. “We have developed a great working relationship with Wharton Business School and they tell us that our NZ-based venture has received more interest from students than any other on offer. “It is great to know that we are making an impact on this globally recognised business education provider. We will continue to develop our partnership and welcome more Wharton students to New Zealand.” Read the full press release here. 

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