Wed 11 Nov 2020

PM visits during student celebration

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern was a special guest at the New Plymouth campus today, the first Prime Minister to visit WITT in the polytech’s history.

Accompanied by Minister Megan Woods and MPs Glen Bennett, Adrian Rurawhe and Steph Lewis, the Prime Minister’s visit was timed perfectly to allow her to join the party at an end of trimester celebration for students. Her presence certainly caused a buzz.

The visitors were formally welcomed to WITT with a pōwhiri in Te Piere, where Prime Minister Arden addressed staff, students, board members and community stakeholders.

She emphasised the Government’s commitment to minimising barriers to education and maximising opportunities to train and upskill; a way of future-proofing New Zealand through Covid recovery. She went on to congratulate students who are now ready to complete their study, acknowledging the challenging year that it has been.

Following the formalities, Prime Minister Ardern met with over a hundred excited students and happily posed in countless selfies.

A brief tour of campus followed, finishing at WITT’s trades and construction area, where the Prime Minister and Minister Megan Woods got the opportunity to see first-hand the construction projects that students are working on.

The ministerial tour continued in Taranaki, with Prime Minister Ardern and Minister Woods going on to announce a $70m fund to reduce carbon emissions from coal and gas.

For more about her visit, check out the Stuff article - 'Jacindamania' hits Taranaki for a day.