Graduates, teachers, families and friends came together to celebrate success at our tenth graduation ceremony on Friday.
The ceremony at the Auckland War Memorial Museum Event Centre began with a pōwhiri and an official welcome by Kaumātua Pita Pou.
Dunedin’s first female mayor, Dame Sukhi Turner, made the graduation address.
Sukhi said the OPAIC family contained people of 40 different nationalities, with 18 nationalities represented at the ceremony.
She congratulated students on endeavouring to get their qualifications and on choosing an institution that believes in quality education.
Sukhi said the school’s collaboration with industry allowed students to gain work experience.
“You are now well prepared to go out into the world and make a living.”
The campus is also a melting pot of diverse cultures, languages and traditions, she said.
“You are so fortunate to have the opportunity to learn and spend time together in such an environment.”
Learning and living with people of great diversity is an education in itself, according to Sukhi.
“It teaches you to be tolerant, broadminded and liberal.”
Chair of Otago Polytechnic Council Kathy Grant extended her warmest congratulations to all 240 graduates on behalf of the Otago Polytechnic Council.
Kathy acknowledged their courage in traveling across the world to study here.
She said the ceremony was all about recognising success.
“Your success is what, as an institution, we are all about.”
Kathy talked about the progress OPAIC has made in the last 12 months.
The school has increased its focus on quality systems and on enhancing the experience of students.
The orientation programme now includes activities to help students understand the Kiwi culture.
OPAIC also introduced its first AI staff member, enhanced its industry engagement process, and stepped up relationships with graduates this year.
‘We are confident that this campus in New Zealand’s largest city will continue to grow and develop.”
Academic and special awards were presented followed by speeches by Graduate Diploma in Sales and Marketing graduate Kymbat Murzasheva, on behalf of OPAIC, and Bachelor of Social Services (Counselling) graduate Thomas Tarurongo Wynne, on behalf of Capable NZ.
It was the first time OPAIC’s graduation ceremony has been held at the Auckland War Memorial Museum Events Centre.
The ceremony was preceded by a parade around the Auckland Domain and followed by a celebratory after function.
See all the photos on Flickr.