Thu 14 Oct 2021

WITT's Wealth of Knowledge

The year is 1991. Denim jeans are getting wider and fitting looser; grunge music is the genre of choice as Nirvana’s new album ‘Nevermind’ blasts through the speakers; you pick up the phone and answer it “Hello Taranaki Polytechnic.’

The year is now 2021. Old 90’s fashion trends are slowly making a comeback accompanied by a sea of facemasks. The music of choice is more explicit, with dubstep moving aside and letting drum n bass prevail. You pick up the phone and answer it, “Hello welcome to WITT.”

Some of WITT's longest serving staff members have seen both sides of these eras, which is just as challenging as it is rewarding.

WITT’s 20-30 year club, which celebrates our long-serving staff, recently had their annual dinner to thank and acknowledge them for all the work they have done in their time at WITT. 

Executive Director of Corporate Services Nicola Conley, who is 2 years shy of the 30-year club remembers starting here as a tutor. She acknowledges that like all organisations, WITT has been through some rough times.

“It takes a lot to stay with an organisation when it’s in a hard place and to have this club expanding each year is extremely rewarding.”  

“It shows the genuine passion and experience of our staff at WITT and it speaks to the culture that we have now created here,” she said.

Welcomed into the club this year was Deputy Director - School of NZIHT Jill Warner. Jill reminisced on the last 20 years, saying she began as an administrator in C-Block for the 'Media, Communication and Art' department.

“In 2007 I transferred to NZIHT as the Diploma and Degree Co-ordinator…and the rest is history”, she said.

Jill has spent a significant amount of time commuting to Hamilton in the last two years to support the NZIHT students based there.

“While the commuting was tough at times, working with the students and seeing them succeed made it all worth it”, she said.

Another member of the club, Bridget Knuckey who has been at WITT 25-years has also been driven by student success and will reach another high in her career on Monday.

“When I started at WITT I worked in the book room, and I was answering the phone “Hello Taranaki Polytechnic.”

”I have had a variety of roles while being at WITT and on Monday I’ll be starting a new one, leading the Library -Te Whare Mātauranga and the Learning Resource Centre.”

“The most important thing for me about working here, is I could never have imagined a job where I could have had such a variety of roles and still get to walk alongside the students in their journey.”

All WITT employees, both past and present, have played a part in the culture we have created here, guiding and supporting both students and each other. It is a remarkable achievement to reach 20 years with an organisation.

So, without further ado…a big round of applause for our staff and THANK YOU for all your hard work and dedication over the years!