Auckland Mayor Len Brown has applauded New Zealand Management Academies (NZMA) for its success in getting South Auckland youth into training and employment.
During a speech at the recent opening of NZMA’s newly-upgraded Otahuhu Campus, Mr Brown said the private training provider was giving the young people of South Auckland not just qualifications but also hope and inspiration.
“I want to take my hat off to you, NZMA. You are doing an awesome job. You are enabling these young people to gain further skills after they leave high school, through higher learning, certificates and diplomas. You are also supporting the mums and dads who are looking at their second careers. You are helping these people find their dreams,” he said.
“This is the pipeline. We are building the economy to ensure our pipeline goes out of schools, into NZMA and on into the workforce. I want to support you, firstly through investment in the South - we need our young people in employment; and secondly we need to back them up in their studies.”
Mr Brown said although youth unemployment had dropped, he was working hard to get it down even further.
“Every opportunity I get I will work to do that. This city is driving this country, and it is critical that we lift the bar across all sectors. NZMA you are doing a superb job and we want to back you up as a council and as a community.”
As a token of his appreciation Mr Brown sung a waiata, How Great Thou Art.
“I’ve chosen this particular hymn as a sign of our respect, regard and hope for a great future for you and our people as they come through your organisation.”
The campus’s latest renovations include a brand-new training café, Café Fusion, a new retail shop and a host of other upgraded facilities. NZMA Joint Chief Executive, Tim Cullinane, said the new facilities would help NZMA deliver on its vision, ‘to be a leader in New Zealand education by making a meaningful difference to the lives of our students and their communities’.
“In this new facility we wanted to create a real hub for this campus and give real heart to this organisation for our students and staff,” said Mr Cullinane.
“A value we all share is a desire to do everything we can for the young people of New Zealand, and the young people of South Auckland in particular. At NZMA we are very proud of our students at Otahuhu. Success, opportunity and talent are all alive and well here in South Auckland.”
NZMA Auckland South is one of four campuses operated by the training provider. Its grand re-opening took place on November 8, with celebrations starting in the bar training area, where NZMA hospitality students showcased their skills making cocktails and serving hors d’oeuvres. Official proceedings followed in the stylish new Café Fusion, with a Powhiri by Kaumatua Bob Clark and Marsh Herewiini, opening with the protocol of Tainui Iwi.
NZMA’s Kapa Haka group, Te Whare Wananga Matauranga Whakahaere o Aotearoa also performed a waiata tautoko, a medley of songs from different Iwi throughout Aotearoa – and their powerful haka was a definite highlight. The event culminated with the unveiling of a plaque by the Mayor to signal the official re-opening of the campus.