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Speaker biographies

Speaker biographies

Last updated 22 July 2019
Last updated 22 July 2019

Day one


Professor Tim Renick

Professor Tim Renick

Vice Provost and Vice President for Enrolment, Management and Student Success, Georgia State University

Education

PhD, Princeton University, 1986
MA, Princeton University, 1984
BA, Dartmouth College, 1982

  • Recipient, 2002 Board of Regents Teaching Excellence Award
  • Recipient, 2004 Excellence in Teaching Award from the American Academy of Religion
  • Recipient, 2016 Award for National Leadership in Student Success

Since 2008, Tim has directed the student success and enrolment efforts of Georgia State University, overseeing among the fastest improving graduation rates in the nation and the elimination of all achievement gaps based on students’ race, ethnicity or income level. He has testified on strategies for helping university students succeed before the U.S. Senate and has twice been invited to speak at the White House. His work has been covered by the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal and CNN, and cited by President Obama. He was named one of 2016’s Most Innovative People in Higher Education by Washington Monthly and was the recipient of the 2015-16 Award for National Leadership in Student Success Innovation. He is currently the principal investigator for a $9 million U.S. Department of Education grant to study the impact of proactive, predictive-analytics-based advisement on 10,000 low-income and first-generation students nationally. A summa cum laude graduate of Dartmouth College, Tim holds his MA and PhD in Religion from Princeton University.

 

Dr Mereana Selby

Dr Mereana Selby

Ngāti Raukawa, Ngāti Huia, Ngāti Porou
Tumuaki (Chief Executive)
Te Wānanga o Raukawa

Mereana has a particular interest in language revitalisation and intergenerational language transmission. Before taking up the Tumuaki role at Te Wānanga o Raukawa, Mereana spent time looking at how technology can contribute towards the language learning process and in particular to the survival of te reo Māori. She led the Te Ako Hikohiko experiment, which involved bringing together technology, education theory and mātauranga Māori to find solutions for salvaging an endangered language.

Professor Airini

Professor Airini

Samoa
Dean, Faculty of Education and Social Work

Thompson Rivers University
British Columbia, Canada

Airini is an award-winning researcher and educator for indigenous tertiary education success in both New Zealand and Canada. She currently leads the pan-TRU Coyote Project to lift indigenous student university outcomes and has a lead role in the British Columbia Ministry of Education’s project for parity in education outcomes for at least 58,000 indigenous K-12 students across the province’s public schools. Her goal is for education success for all to mean all.

 

Patrick Jones

Patrick Jones

Te Aitanga a Mahaki
Executive Director of Policy and Projects

Eastern Institute of Technology, Tertiary Alliance of New Zealand (TANZ)

Patrick oversees the development of investment planning and policy analysis related to portfolio planning, programme delivery and educational success for students. He is involved with several initiatives that use data to inform action and increase chances of students succeeding. This work, and the wider work of the Eastern Institute of Technology, has a particular emphasis on the success of Māori.

Dr Leon Bakker

Dr Leon Bakker

Director of Planning and Management Information
Victoria University of Wellington

Leon’s career started working as a clinical psychologist and researcher in the Department of Corrections and led to managing the Strategic Analysis team in the Policy Division. After over 15 years working in the corrections field, he moved into strategic and data analysis contract work for several government agencies, including the Tertiary Education Commission, where he became the Group Manager Information Management before his move to Victoria University of Wellington.

 

Dr Oriwia Raureti

Dr Oriwia Raureti

Ngāti Raukawa, Ngāti Rangitihi
Tumuaki Tuarua
Te Wānanga o Raukawa

In her previous role as Deputy Director Centre for Training Services at Te Wānanga o Raukawa, Oriwia oversaw the procurement of computer technology and teaching programmes to ensure all who received computers were competent users. The Computer to Students initiative was recognised with a national award for innovation by the Prime Minister at the time, the Rt Hon Helen Clark. In 2008, Oriwia was appointed to the role of Pou Whakahaere (Executive Director Operations), and over the course of 10 years has developed a team committed to an excellent student experience.

Associate Professor Joanne Baxter

Associate Professor Joanne Baxter

Poutini Ngāi Tahu, Ngāti Apa ki te Rā Tō
Associate Dean Māori, Division of Health Sciences
University of Otago

In addition to her role as Associate Dean Māori, Division of Health Sciences, Joanne is also the Director of the Māori Health Workforce Development Unit, which provides a range of services to over 900 Māori and low socio-economic status tertiary students studying in Health Sciences, aiming to achieve equity in tertiary educational outcomes in health. Over 10 years there has been a significant increase in Māori student success in Health Sciences at Otago, including entry into and graduation from competitive entry Health Professional degree programmes.

 

Veronica Pritchard

Veronica Pritchard

Samoa
Director, Strategic Initiatives and Projects

Auckland University of Technology

Veronica is an experienced project manager with a demonstrated history of working in higher education. A strong programme and project management professional who graduated from Auckland University of Technology, she is skilled in event management, strategic partnerships, public speaking, community engagement and leadership.

Warwick Pitts

Warwick Pitts

Executive Director, Products and Planning
Wintec

Warwick has experience in the tertiary education sector as a senior strategic leader and manager. He has held general manager responsibility for customer experience; quality and risk; enrolments; data management and performance reporting; sales and marketing (B2B and B2C); strategic product management and organisational planning.

 

Naomi Manu

Naomi Manu

Rangitāne, Ngāti Kahungunu
Director of Māori Student Success
Massey University

Naomi founded Massey University’s Pūhoro science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) Academy, which raises Māori engagement in STEM pathways. She was a finalist in the 2018 New Zealand Women of Influence Awards in the Diversity category. Naomi is passionate about rangatahi development and in particular creating opportunities for rangatahi Māori to enhance their skills for increased economic transformation and knowledge creation.

Dr Stuart Middleton

Dr Stuart Middleton

Specialist Advisor to the Chief Executive
Manukau Institute of Technology

Stuart developed and implemented New Zealand’s first Secondary Tertiary High School, which takes Year 10 students facing low educational outcomes and has generated a wide range of success over the past 10 years. He is currently helping to develop New Zealand’s first P-TECH Programme, an Early College High School model for Year 10 students to focus on science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) and Digital Technologies through a combined secondary/tertiary/industry support initiative. In 2010 he received the New Zealand Order of Merit for his contribution to education.

 

 

Day two


Dr Tristan Denley

Dr Tristan Denley

Chief Academic Officer and Executive Vice Chancellor of Academic Affairs, University System of Georgia

Education

PhD in mathematics from Trinity College Cambridge

Tristan serves as the Chief Academic Officer and Executive Vice Chancellor of Academic Affairs for the University System of Georgia. Prior to this position, he served as Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs at the Tennessee Board of Regents. Before moving to Tennessee, Dr Denley was Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs at Austin Peay State University. Tristan earned his PhD in mathematics from Trinity College Cambridge and has held positions in Sweden and Canada, and at the University of Mississippi and the University of Tennessee. At the University of Mississippi, he served as Chair of Mathematics and Senior Fellow of the Residential College program. Tristan is recognised for his ‘co-requisite mathematics’ initiative which has a significant impact on the achievement rates for priority learner groups.

 

Associate Professor Tracy Bowell

Associate Professor Tracy Bowell

Pro Vice-Chancellor Teaching and Learning
University of Waikato

Before her current role, Tracy was Senior Lecturer in Philosophy and Associate Dean (Academic) in the Faculty of Arts of Social Sciences. She researches and publishes in the areas of argumentation and critical thinking, philosophy of education and feminist philosophy, and on Wittgenstein's philosophy. She has degrees from the Universities of Auckland, Cambridge and Sussex.

Chris Collins

Chris Collins

Chief Executive
Eastern Institute of Technology

Chris previously spent 17 years at Victoria University of Wellington and Massey University in academic, general and senior management roles, before becoming the Chief Executive at the Eastern Institute of Technology in 2004. Since taking up this role, he has chaired the New Zealand Institutes of Technology and Polytechnics (NZITP) sector CEO Group and served on the Board of Business Hawke's Bay, the Hawke's Bay Regional Indoor Sports & Events Centre and the Hawke’s Bay Community Fitness Centre Trust. Since February 2019, he has been part-time seconded into the Government’s Reform of Vocational Education programme.

 

Phil Alexander-Crawford

Phil Alexander-Crawford

Ngāpuhi, Ngāti Hine, Ngāti Rangi, Ngāti Rēhia, Te Whiu
Director Demand Management
NorthTec Polytechnic

Phil has been involved in tertiary and secondary education for over 20 years. He is an advocate for regional ākonga, Māori and learners striving for the stars. His research interests include Māori and mainstream co-design in education and structural solutions to help achieve change. Phil sits on a range of boards including the Tai Tokerau Māori Council and Northland Chamber of Commerce, and has recently joined the Sisters of Mercy Ministries Board (Tiaki Manatū) as a Director.

Dr Grant Klinkum

Dr Grant Klinkum

Acting Deputy Secretary for Graduate Achievement, Vocations and Careers
Ministry of Education

Grant has been Acting Deputy Secretary for Graduate Achievement, Vocations and Careers since January 2019. His education sector experience includes two roles as Dean of Faculty and one as Deputy Chief Executive of a polytechnic. While working at the Tertiary Education Commission between 2007 and 2014, Grant was responsible at different times for stakeholder engagement, the Chief Executive’s office and the Tertiary Investment function.

 

Farzanah Desai

Farzanah Desai

Senior Lecturer and Te Atakura Coach
Te Pae Mātauranga ki te Ao/Universal College of Learning

Farzanah is passionate about facilitating staff participation in Te Atakura, a programme which promotes parity of achievement for Māori students and improving educational outcomes for all students. She coaches educators to foster quality teaching and learning by specifically and intentionally creating a relationship-based teaching and learning and working environment. She is also a published researcher in the fields of musculoskeletal pain, occupational health and work-integrated learning.

Melissa Lethaby

Melissa Lethaby

Manager of Disability Information and Support
University of Otago

In her role, Melissa is responsible for facilitating an environment where students with impairments are provided with equitable opportunities to achieve their individual capabilities and participate in all aspects of tertiary education life. She has been in the position for five years, having worked at Disability Information and Support for 17 years. Melissa is also actively involved in ACHIEVE – the National Post-Secondary Disability Education Network.

 

Dr Jemaima Sipaea Tiatia-Seath

Dr Jemaima Sipaea Tiatia-Seath

Samoa
Co-Head of School, Te Wānanga o Waipapa, School of Māori Studies and Pacific Studies

University of Auckland

Jemaima is of Samoan descent and has a community and public health background. She was one of six panellists on the New Zealand Government’s 2018 Mental Health and Addiction Inquiry. Her research interests include Pacific Studies, mental health, wellbeing, Pacific suicide prevention and postvention, youth development and Pacific health inequities.

Dr Eru Prendegast-Tarena

Dr Eru Prendergast-Tarena

Ngāi Tahu
Executive Director
Tokona te Raki

Eruera Tarena is the Executive Director of Tokona te Raki: Māori Futures Collective, a Ngāi Tahu collaborative initiative focused on using social innovation tools and approaches to address the root causes of inequality, drive systems change and achieve equity for all Māori in the Ngāi Tahu takiwā.

Panel facilitators

 

Andy Jackson

Andy Jackson

Group Manager, Tertiary Education
Ministry of Education of New Zealand

Utufaasisili Rosemary Mose

Utufaasisili Rosemary Mose

Chief Advisor Pasifika
New Zealand Qualifications Authority

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