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Values emphasised at Wellington awards ceremony

Thursday, 1 December 2016 4:51pm

Wellington-prize-giving-image
The winner of the Wellington campus PhD research prize in Basic Science Connie Gilfillan gives the postgraduate student address at Wellington’s student award ceremony.

Staff and students at the University’s Wellington campus attended a wonderful student awards ceremony on Friday 18 November to finish off what had been a difficult week of earthquakes and floods in the Wellington region.

After a Mihi Whatatau led by Toa Waaka, Dean Sunny Collings welcomed everyone to the campus including Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and Enterprise) Professor Richard Blaikie and Pro-Vice-Chancellor Professor Peter Crampton who were attending from Dunedin.

"You have knowledge and skills in your kete, but don’t forget to pack your values too."

Professor Crampton told the students and staff in his opening address that after such an ‘epic week’ it was important to end the year on a celebratory note. He also noted that there was much to celebrate with around 50 new Māori doctors graduating from Otago in a few weeks’ time. This number is set to increase year-by-year from now on, reflecting huge success for Māori communities and for the University, he said.

Professor Collings congratulated the graduating students and talked about the importance of values.

“You have knowledge and skills in your kete, but don’t forget to pack your values too,” she said.

And she told the students: “Be intentional, and be kind to yourself.”

Student leader and head of Wellington Medical Students Association Mike Fleete gave the following two pieces of advice to his fellow graduates and other students: “Talk to each other and share your experiences and call for help if you need it” and “focus on what you do know, focus on the things you can do really well.”

Thanks go to all those who helped organise this event, especially Diane Kenwright, Ewen Coleman, Keith Baldwin, Louise Goosens, Mark Huthwaite, and Karen Coleman.