60th Anniversary

This year marks 60 years since a pioneering group of regional and national leaders seized the opportunity to build a uniquely New Zealand model of university education in Hamilton city.

ThePa 60th

Founded by the community, for the community, and opened in 1964, the University of Waikato carries a rich legacy full of remarkable achievements that have shaped us into the institution we are today.

Professor Neil Quigley Vice-Chancellor

As we look back on 60 years, we honour the mana of those previous generations and acknowledge our strong connections to Waikato-Tainui and the Kīngitanga. The University sits on land returned to Waikato-Tainui and vested in the name of the first Māori King, Pootatau Te Wherowhero. It is these foundations and a shared purpose with our community that continue to drive us forward.

Our curriculum development and research achievements, including the launch of New Zealand’s first Artificial Intelligence (AI) Institute, Te Ipu o te Mahara, the development of world's first Bachelor of Climate Change and our QS ranking of number one in New Zealand for research, based on citations per faculty member, are also deeply linked to the values of excellence and innovation demonstrated by our founders.

Throughout 2024 we will mark our 60 years with a series of events while also looking firmly to our future with the same optimism and determination of our founders. Our focus will always be on responding to the needs of our community and contributing to the educational, social, cultural, and environmental development of our region and New Zealand.

This year, we celebrate the graduation of our first Bachelor of Nursing cohort, and we look forward to welcoming new cohorts into programmes including our Bachelor of Banking Finance and Technology in 2024 and Master of Pharmacy Practice in 2025.

The signing of a Memorandum of Understanding with the Ministry of Health, and development of a business case for New Zealand’s first graduate entry medical school is also a fitting development to mark our 60 years and a continuation of our innovative, future-focussed spirit and dedication to serving the needs of our community.

Together, let us celebrate our past, embrace our present, and continue to chart a bold path forward towards a brighter future.

Ngā mihi nui,

Professor Neil Quigley
University of Waikato