Media Advisory September 26


Celebrations to mark the 40th anniversary of the University of Waikato Blues Awards take place this week. The Blues Awards recognise the commitment and achievements of students in either sport or the creative and performing arts. Among the 50 awards to be given out will be the Sportsman and Sportswoman of the Year, Māori Person of the Year and Creative and Performing Arts Person of the Year. Past Blues Award winners include Olympic gold medalist Rob Waddell, Silver Fern Joline Henry, former netball player and television host Jenny-May Coffin and former Tall Blacks captain Pero Cameron. The Wallace Corporation University of Waikato Blues Awards are held at the Gallagher Academy of Performing Arts on Friday September 30, Hosted by the Vice-Chancellor Professor Roy Crawford and MC’d by Waikato Alumnus, TVNZ reporter Lucas de Jong.


A unique MBA programme for Māori leaders has been named one of four finalists in the inaugural MBA Innovation Award offered by the London-based Association of MBAs (AMBA). Developed to foster indigenous ways of doing business with a collaborative ethos, the programme is a partnership between the University of Waikato Management School and the Waikato-Tainui College for Research and Development at Hopuhopu. “It’s an ideal approach to MBA education for Māori leaders, and for the programme to have reached the finals of AMBA’s MBA Innovation Award illustrates the success of our partnership with the College and the university’s commitment to new approaches in management education,” says Waikato Management School Dean Professor Frank Scrimgeour. AMBA is one of three international management education accreditation bodies whose combined accreditations form the prestigious Triple Crown held by a select group of business schools around the world. Waikato Management School is one of only three Australasian business schools to have achieved Triple Crown accreditation. The Waikato MBA delivered at the College offers a contextualised curriculum that is focused on being culturally responsive, transformational and challenging. The winner of the MBA Innovation Award will be announced at a gala dinner in London on October 19.


The University of Waikato hosts visiting scholar Dr Per Axelsson from the University of Melbourne on Tuesday September 27 as part of a seminar on indigenous health. Dr Axelsson, from the Centre for Health and Society at Melbourne University, is an expert on the consequence of colonisation on mortality and health. During the seminar he will discuss the limits and possibilities of investigating health effects of colonisation and the transition that took place in the western world following the introduction of modern public health measures. His research examines the history of colonisation on indigenous health, and the continued effect on indigenous health today. The free seminar takes place in BG.24 at the University of Waikato tomorrow on Tuesday September 27, at 12noon.


Outlining her doctoral thesis in three minutes earned Azilawati Banchit $5000 research money and a trip to Australia. The Waikato University finance student leaves for Perth September 27 where she’ll represent Waikato at the Australasian Thesis in 3 competition being hosted by the University of Western Australia. She’s studying how companies fare before and after takeover and the impact of majority shareholders on company survival and profitability. Meanwhile another crop of PhD students at Waikato is preparing for this year’s Thesis in 3 competition at Waikato. The event is part of October’s Postgraduate Research Month which features events for prospective and current higher degree students, including workshops on how to get started on a PhD, doctoral writing and keeping momentum. There are faculty postgraduate student conferences, and comedian Te Radar will host the finals of Thesis in 3 at a public event at Hamilton’s Clarence Street Theatre on October 26.


The Christchurch earthquakes have sparked fresh concern about the likelihood of a large quake in Wellington. The University of Waikato will host lecturer Russ Van Dissen from GNS Science on Thursday September 29 as part of a lecture series given around the country. The lecture, titled ‘It's Our Fault - Better Defining Earthquake Risk in Wellington’, is a comprehensive study of Wellington's earthquake risk. The objective of the study is to position the capital city of New Zealand to become more resilient through an encompassing study of the likelihood of large earthquakes, the effects of these earthquakes, and their impacts on humans and the built environment. Van Dissen was named the 2011 Hochstetter Lecturer in honour of Ferdinand von Hochstetter, an early explorer and geologist. The free public lecture takes place Thursday September 29, 7.30pm in MSB.1.01 at the University of Waikato.


A group of Waikato University accounting students with a Massey ring-in won the Waikato-Auckland Ace the Case competition run by KPMG. The September event was one of a series being held around New Zealand by KPMG, designed to increase university commerce and business students’ analytical and presentation skills and give KPMG an insight to the talent available for recruitment. To be part of the case competition, students had to apply, just as they would for a graduate position, and were selected based on their CVs. Seven Waikato Management School students were initially chosen, with the team of James Chapman, Rochelle Webb and Rachael Alsemgeest joined by Nick Carter from Massey University in Auckland. The five competing teams had a half-day workshop learning analytical and presentation skills; they were then given a real business case which they had three hours to read, analyse and come up with a strategy for growth. “You’d be amazed what those students achieved in three hours,” says Mary-Jane Richards, resourcing manager at KPMG.


Four adult students have been awarded University of Waikato Vice-Chancellor’s Adult Learners Awards. First offered in 2001, the Vice-Chancellor’s Adult Learners Awards are intended to encourage more adults to access learning opportunities and to celebrate the efforts, achievements and contributions of adult learners. The university has more than 4,800 adult learners, defined as students over the age of 25. Tracey Kibble, Sharon Cullen, Vicky Taplin and Stephen Wong each received awards of $1500 and a kowhai tree, to symbolise continued growth, in a ceremony last week. The award recognises their academic and personal achievements.


A newly released app by the University of Waikato’s Science Learning Hub is taking science-education to the forefront of technology. The Science Learning Hub is a national project managed by the University of Waikato and funded by the Ministry of Science and Innovation. The website promotes student interest and engagement in science by providing a link between the scientists in New Zealand’s science research organisations, science teachers and educational research. Recently released, the Science Learning Hub app will make the content available on the website more accessible for school students who have access to iPads, iPods and iPhones. An app for Android technology is currently being developed. Science Learning Hub project manager Di Hartwell says “we know that there is an increasing number of schools who are using iPads, iPods and other tablets so we developed the app in response to these developments in ICT.” Downloadable off iTunes, the app contains video and images from the website in an easy to navigate format. The Science Learning Hub won the Education category at the Telecommunications Users Association NZ (TUANZ) 2011 Innovation Awards which honour innovation across New Zealand’s telecommunications sector.


In this year’s Margaret Avery Memorial Lecture, Professor Barbara Brookes will present a lecture entitled ‘The Theatre of Medicine: Dr Anna Longshore Potts on Tour in Nineteenth Century New Zealand’ which explores the significance of gender and the reception of an American medical practitioner in a British colonial society. Variously named a ‘she-quack’, a ‘hybrid,’ a ‘lady medico,’ a ‘Quaker lady,’ ‘the American lady doctor’ and ‘one of the most distinguished women of this century,’ Anna Longshore Potts proved to be an entertainment sensation. By the 1870s she had become a lecturer on health, travelling first across the USA and then throughout the English-speaking world. In 1883, she travelled the length and breadth of New Zealand with a significant entourage. The lecture by Professor Brookes explores her time in New Zealand. Margaret Avery first came to Waikato in 1965 as a visiting lecturer and in 1993 was awarded the title of Honorary Fellow of Waikato University for her notable service and leadership in advancing the academic aims of the university. Her contribution to the wider university is acknowledged and celebrated with the annual memorial lecture. This latest lecture takes place in S.1.04 at the University of Waikato on September 29, starting at 5pm. A gold coin donation is asked of those attending.


An intermediate-level course to identify treatments and strategies for managing autism and Asperger’s syndrome will be held in Tauranga on Saturday October 1. Offered by the University of Waikato’s Centre for Continuing Education, the full-day workshop by registered psychologist Dr Antony Thomas is aimed at teachers, educators, parents and other professionals. As the number of children identified with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) increases worldwide, parents are faced with an array of popular treatments, which are offered to the public without scientific backing or empirical research support. Often they are associated with exaggerated claims of effectiveness. Dr Thomas will help participants understand some of the ‘evidence-based’ treatments and strategies available, which are validated by international research. The course will be held on Saturday October 1 from 9am-5pm at the University of Waikato, 144 Durham Street, Tauranga, AG.11. It costs $75 and enrolments can be made online at


The University of Waikato and Bay of Plenty Polytechnic will jointly host the Bay of Plenty Chamber of Commerce networking event Business After 5 on Wednesday October 5. Every month different member organisations take turns to host Business After 5 at their own premises to showcase their products and services, while networking with other business people. This October it is the academic sector’s turn with the university and polytechnic jointly hosting the event at the Bongard Centre, 200 Cameron Road, Tauranga, starting at 5pm. The future of tertiary education in the Bay continues to go from strength to strength as both institutions work together to deliver high quality study options for students. University of Waikato Vice-Chancellor Professor Roy Crawford and Bay of Plenty Polytechnic CEO Dr Alan Hampton will give a brief presentation about how local business can take advantage of the growing research and education opportunities provided through the tertiary partnership.


Vodafone CEO Russell Stanners will talk at the University of Waikato Management School next week about the importance of shaping company culture. Stanners will discuss his position as CEO of one of the country’s telecommunications giants and the importance of an organisation’s values in shaping and determining its destiny. Stanners will recount how his organisation has transformed into one which understands why putting the customer at the heart of everything is key to improving business performance. The lecture is part of The University of Waikato’s Centre for Corporate and Executive Education’s Excellence in Business Practice Series in which industry leaders talk about their experiences and how they have navigated through today’s complexity of change. The free and open lecture takes place on Friday October 7 in MSB1.01, at the University of Waikato, starting at 1pm. 


Children growing up in the 21st century are facing a very different world to that which their parents, grandparents and teachers grew up in. For these children, using instant communication technology such as email, texting and Facebook is second nature and having access to unlimited information through search engines is not a novelty, but a part of everyday life. For these reasons the education they require must be different to anything that has been offered before. Join Director of LENScience Jacquie Bay and science communicator Liz Carpenter at Hamilton’s October Cafe Scientifique, Tuesday October 11 at Café Français, for their talk titled ‘It’s school Jim, but not as we knew it!’. Bay and Carpenter will discuss the idea of tailoring educational environments to enhance and foster the development of lifelong learning skills and competencies; an idea which can be applied over a range of contexts. Hamilton’s October Café Scientifique takes place at Café Français, 711 Victoria Street, Hamilton, at 7.30pm on Tuesday October 11. It is supported by the university’s Faculty of Science and Engineering. Café Scientifique is a forum for debating science issues, and is supported by the Faculty of Science & Engineering at the University of Waikato to make science accessible to people outside the traditional academic context.

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