More than 270 students crossed the stage at Otago Polytechnic Auckland International Campus’s 13th graduation ceremony yesterday.
They included OPAIC and Capable NZ graduates from a range of programmes.
Otago Polytechnic Limited Board Chair, Tony Allison, congratulated students and staff for their tenacity and dedication.
Despite this year’s challenges, there was a positive buzz around campus and a clear sense of commitment from all involved, he said.
The partnership between Otago Polytechnic and Future Skills brought together two of New Zealand’s top performing educational institutions, he said.
“The partnership has been particularly successful and has provided international students who want to live in Auckland with the opportunity to gain an Otago Polytechnic qualification.”
Students had now completed their course of study and today marked the end of a journey.
“It also signifies the beginnings of a new journey. The beginning of a new career – armed with your brand new qualifications and the beginning of a whole new range of experiences beyond the polytechnic.”
“You leave this institution with both a relevant qualification and a range of skills and attributes that will enable you to find your place.”
Guest speaker, Fonterra Chief Financial Officer, Marc Rivers, talked about the value of service.
He said the Maori concept of wairuatanga, was like two streams merging into a flowing river. One stream is the material and the other the spiritual.
He said to fulfil our potential we have to merge these two streams within ourselves.
“The key to this is service. Service lies at the heart of the spiritual life. Through service, our longing for spiritual growth and desire to contribute to the transformation of society become united.”
Walking the path of service brought meaning to life and helped us realise the purpose of education. It helped clarify our thoughts about the future, develop qualities that lead to the wellbeing of our families and strengthened friendships.
He urged graduates to bring together the twin streams of material and spiritual into a flowing river which brought personal and social transformation through their own path of service.