NorthTec graduates filled Whāngarei’s CBD last Friday afternoon as they marched through the town to celebrate their graduation.
Over 400 NorthTec students made up the graduating class of 2019 – having all successfully completed diplomas, degrees or graduate diplomas.
NorthTec student valedictorian, Daryn Thompson, graduated with a Bachelor of Nursing and said it was a desire to upskill which led him to start a nursing degree at NorthTec.
The Whangārei dad had been working in the mental health sector as a community support worker for 10 years and when looking at his options he decided to start a Bachelor of Nursing at NorthTec in 2017. Three years later Daryn is now working as a mental health nurse for Northland DHB.
“I never thought a person like me could be in a position such as this and be a role model and yet here I am, one of many who chose to Stay Close, Go Far.” said Daryn. “7 years ago I looked at my then 12 year old daughter and 10 year old son and thought I need to do better, I need to role model what I would have for them to become.”
Daryn said his wife is also completing her Bachelor of Nursing, his eldest daughter is at Auckland University of Technology studying criminal law and sociology, and his son is doing a building course with the goal of getting an apprenticeship.
He said he hoped his kids had learned what was possible with hard work.
“I hope that they’ve learned that through hard work you can achieve whatever it is you want to achieve. And that it’s important to have goals, and my goal was to upskill, so that they can see that it’s possible to go away to uni, go away to study, get a qualification and give them a better chance at life.”
Two ceremonies were held at Forum North, to celebrate students graduating from the following subjects: Applied Arts; Applied Writing; Agribusiness Management; Cookery; Te Reo me Ngā Tikanga; Tourism and Travel; Nursing; Conservation and Environmental Management; Sport and Recreation; Applied Science; Nursing; Business; Civil Engineering; Software Development; Web Development and Design; Applied Social Services.