Programme provides a solid platform
Drawing on the strengths of their Pacific Island ancestors is helping young people to realise their potential.
That's the idea behind Pacific Island Leaders of Tomorrow - PILOT. It is a skills and leadership training programme for Pasifika secondary students from across Auckland.
The programme aims to equip students with all the information and skills needed to make decisions about their future - from school subject choices to university and planning for a career.
"In the western world a pilot is someone who flies a plane. In our culture it's someone who navigates the sea," programme chairman Seiuli Terri Leo-Mauu says.
"The whole programme is based around the Pacific Ocean which connects us all together.
"Our fishermen ancestors knew what kind of bait to use to get the right kind of fish - so too with our career planning programme . The students need the right skills to get the right kind of career they want in the future."
The programme is open to Pasifika students from years 10 to 13, with about 100 students from each year level being nominated by their teachers. It includes a mix of workshops, presentations, guest speakers, career expos and family evenings.
De La Salle College student Uaieta Eri, 16, says the programme has encouraged him to follow his dream of studying and working in the medical field.
"You can't let your background drag you down from what you can achieve. Even if you came from a hard family life, you can still do something."
Talei Timakata, a year 11 student at Wesley College, says hearing from successful Pasifika people was particularly helpful.
The programme is a collaboration between AUT University, Best Pacific Institute of Education, Manukau Institute of Technology, Massey University, NZ Management Academies, Unitec Institute of Technology, University of Auckland, Victoria University of Wellington, Waikato University and Career Services.
- © Fairfax NZ News
Have the new speed limit rules made you change your driving habits?