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Supernan learning to become a builder

Success Stories
Liz Nicholls - NZMA - Profile photo

Liz Nicholls is one of the ten NZMA students selected for The UP 100 – a publication featuring 100 exceptional students and graduates across Australasia and beyond.

What makes Liz special? At 75-years-old, Liz is holding her own in construction trades. She has recently finished her Level 3 building qualification at the NZMA Trades Hoani Waititi Marae campus, where the youngest trainee is 16-years-old. Now she is taking on the next challenge with NZMA – currently working towards a Level 3 paint and plastering qualification.

When asked why she decided to become a builder as a grandmother, she says the goal is to keep fit and attain a practical skillset to sustain her independence. Liz lives by herself, so it’s important for her to be able to fix things around the house.

The Ngāpuhi grandmother has ten mokopuna, all of whom share an association with Hoani Waititi Marae. Her son, Taniora, was a foundation student at Te Wharekura o Hoani Waititi Marae.

She brings a calmness to everything she does, and the younger students admit they love having her around.

In an industry dominated by men, Liz proves that you can do anything, regardless of age or gender. She hopes to set an example for other kuia (senior women) to follow in her footsteps.

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