Insights from the Instep Young Leaders’ Forum breakfast with the University of Waikato 

We are thrilled to share a recap of the recent Young Leaders’ Forum breakfast that took place with Joe Macfarlane, Director, Tauranga Campus Development and Operations and Kennedy Wiltshier, Student Engagement Manager from the University of Waikato. As we continue our commitment to fostering collaboration, innovation, and growth within the Tauranga region, the primary focus of the Young Leaders’ Forum breakfasts is to highlight the significance of providing clear pathways for students to remain in Tauranga, access quality education, and seamlessly transition into meaningful work opportunities within the Western Bay of Plenty region.  

Staff at the Tauranga campus work with local businesses and their offerings include a range of programs tailored to the specific needs of the region. From pioneering research initiatives to work integrated learning opportunities, they are dedicated to nurturing graduates who are not only academically accomplished but also well-prepared to contribute to Tauranga’s flourishing economy. 

It was clear that university staff take great pride in acting as a bridge between education and employment, ensuring that our young people are equipped with the skills and knowledge they need to succeed in the future of work. The University has big plans for its growth and the young leaders were encouraged into an open dialogue about the unique challenges they experience here in Tauranga. As a group we were able to reflect on the insights the young leaders provided, and it became clear that the University has a responsibility and an opportunity to nurture the needs and wants of Tauranga Moana’s youth and become an education provider of choice.  

The discussion highlighted the importance of collaborative efforts between educational institutions, businesses, and the community to create a unified ecosystem that fosters talent, creates livable scenes, spurs innovation, and provides opportunities all while driving economic growth and making Tauranga the region for young people to choose to live, learn, work and play.