Content Navigation Accessibility Search Skip to Site Map

Graduate stories

Capable NZ graduates tell their story

Our success stories come from a range of backgrounds – from those who made a distinct career change and wanted their years of experience to count towards another qualification; to those who had been in the industry for years and wanted a formal qualification to recognise their years of hard work and dedication.

Read our graduate stories below to find out how Capable NZ has helped many people reach their full potential. These graduates engaged fully in the Capable NZ learning process, while earning recognition for their knowledge, experience and understanding. Since graduating, they have gone from strength to strength!

  • Lisa Tamati - Te Atiawa & Ngati Ruakawa
    Bachelor of Applied Management

    She’s overcome a broken back to run some of the toughest endurance events on Earth.  She’s published two best-selling books, and she’s an ambassador for Asthma NZ because she also has severe asthma.  She’s the consummate multi-tasker (she’s getting her hair cut as I interview her over the phone) … yet Lisa Tamati felt like she needed more! 

    Read more about Lisa Tamati - Te Atiawa & Ngati Ruakawa
  • Shirley Kerr
    Bachelor of Applied Management

    Shirley Kerr started at St John as a volunteer paramedic, and has worked her way up to a national position in charge of compliance and quality in first aid training. Although Shirley has had more than 30 years of experience with the organisation, she used to feel inferior and in awe of anyone who had a higher education. Then a friend introduced her to Capable NZ.

    Read more about Shirley Kerr
  • Shea McAleese
    Bachelor of Applied Management
    But Shea understands that the life of a professional athlete is a short one and he’s already planning and preparing for the future. “I’ve done a lot in my career through study, hockey and work, but don’t have a degree. I’ve done a diploma in sport science, business courses, and I’m a qualified personal trainer. I have my own coaching company, my own website and do all my own personal sponsorships. You can be really employable and highly skilled but it’s the importance of having the degree next to it.” Read more about Shea McAleese
  • Grant Elliott
    Bachelor of Applied Management
    “I always wanted to get a degree and started doing a Bachelor of Commerce when I was 19, but then professional cricket took over. The Bachelor of Applied Management through Otago Polytechnic has helped me realise I have skills that are transferable for when I do make the transition from sport, and the knowledge that I can achieve and progress in any job I choose. That confidence for sports people is very important because you end up playing the game for 20 years and it’s scary to make that transition. But this course has helped me to embrace that transition whenever I chose to do that,” says Grant Elliott. Read more about Grant Elliott
  • Christian Erick
    Bachelor of Applied Management
    Christian Erick is a 2017 Otago Polytechnic Distinguished Alumni. Read more about Christian Erick
  • Jodi Brown - Ngāti Rārua
    Bachelor of Applied Management
    Jodi Brown is a 2017 Otago Polytechnic Distinguished Alumni. Read more about Jodi Brown - Ngāti Rārua
  • Seilala Mapusua
    Bachelor of Applied Management
    Seilala Mapusua is a 2017 Otago Polytechnic Distinguished Alumni. Read more about Seilala Mapusua
  • Tevita Hale Nai Tu’uhoko (Hale T-Pole)
    Bachelor of Applied Management
    Tevita Hale Nai Tu’uhoko, otherwise known as Hale T-Pole, is a 2017 Otago Polytechnic Distinguished Alumni. Read more about Tevita Hale Nai Tu’uhoko (Hale T-Pole)