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Locals Staff

Operational Committee

Maya Turner

Locals Coordinator 

Maya resizedHi! I'm Maya and i am the Locals Coordinator. As the coordinator I run the programme on a day to day basis and manage the locals team to make sure we are supporting our first year students the best we can. I started off in the Locals Programme as a first year in 2013 and have made my way through the ranks and now I'm the coordinator. I am super excited to see where i can take the programme in 2018 and beyond!

I graduated in 2016 with an Honours degree in Anthropology (with a focus on Biological Anthropology and the ethics of introducing new technologies) after finishing my undergrad in Anthropology and Archaeology in 2015. I am proud to have been born and live in amazing Dunedin! As a past local student myself I understand some of the challenges you may face in your first year and am here to help you through them. I'm looking forward to meeting all of you in 2018 and can't wait to get stuck into the amazing year we at Locals have planned for you!

Email: maya.turner@otago.ac.nz


Stephen Scott

Head of Student Success and the Locals Programme 

StephenKia Ora, I'm Stephen and I am the Head of Student Success. I am responsible for providing academic leadership, oversight and management of matters relating to the first-year student experience at the University of Otago. I am also the Director of the Locals Programme which means I am responsible for the academic, social and pastoral support available to first-year students living at home, flatting or boarding in their first year at the University of Otago.

I graduated Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Auckland, went on to complete a Masters of Science degree at the Auckland University’s Marine station before attending the University of Otago to undertake a doctoral degree (PhD). Before I started in my current job in 2016 I developed, taught and coordinated papers in Zoology where I developed a strong interest in student learning. My research interest now is in the area of student success. I was also the Associate Dean (Māori) in the Division of Sciences where I developed targeted support for Māori science students and science outreach for Māori communities.

Email: steve.scott@otago.ac.nz
Tel: 03 479 8824
Mobile: 021 276 2674


Carole Scott

Administrative Coordinator SLD Programmes

Carole resizedWelcome to Otago and the Locals programme! I’m Carole. I co-ordinate the peer learning programmes, workshops, and day to day operations at the Student Learning Centre. I have been involved in the operations side of Locals since it was first launched in 2010.

I feel it’s really important that first year students like yourself are given every opportunity to succeed in their studies, and enjoy their Uni experience. So I’d like to encourage you to make the most of the services and programmes that the Student Learning Centre offers to help you learn, develop, and succeed at Otago. Feel free to drop by my office, or contact me via email or phone if you’d like more information about how we can help you get the best out of your time at University.

Email: carole.scott@otago.ac.nz
Tel: 03 479 5786


Sandra Spence

School's Liaison 

Sandra resizedHi I'm Sandra, a Liaison Officer for the University of Otago and I visit around 60 schools in the South Island every year. I talk to Year 13s about study opportunities at the University and I help with course planning.

I have been a secondary school teacher for 13 years so I know all about NCEA and have studied at university recently, so I know about the realities of tertiary level study also.

You can contact me if you need any course advice or if you need help with anything in general as I should be able to point you in the right direction for assistance.

Scott/Shand House, 90 St David Street, Dunedin | Ōtepoti
PO Box 56, Dunedin 9054
New Zealand | Aotearoa

Email: sandra.spence@otago.ac.nz
Tel: 03 479 7375
Mobile: 021 279 7375


Greg Heller

Schools Liaison 

Greg resizedKia Ora. I'm Greg and I work alongside Sandra in the Schools' Liaison office. Our main role is to help prospective students manage the transition from secondary to tertiary education.

We are always available to answer any queries and provide sound advice and judgement.

Prior to working with the University, I spent 19 years at South Otago High School, where I was Deputy Principal. 2018 is going to be an exciting year and I am looking forward to working with our Locals programme and getting to know you all.

Scott/Shand House, 90 St David Street, Dunedin | Ōtepoti
PO Box 56, Dunedin 9054
New Zealand | Aotearoa

Email: greg.heller@otago.ac.nz
Phone: 03 479 8251 
Mobile: 021 279 8251