UC eyes the Digital Screen future
We are very excited to announce a new multi-million-dollar Digital Screen Campus (DSC) – the first of its kind in Australasia! Situated on our Dovedale Campus in Christchurch, the new facility will provide a vibrant DSC environment with a combination of industry partnerships and work-integrated learning, providing training for future leaders in film production, game development and cross reality, helping the country play a key role in the future of digital screen convergence.
David Strong, New Zealand Film Commission CEO commented, “New Zealand is renowned for pushing boundaries, challenging industry norms, and redefining technology in the screen industry. The DSC will provide the skills, connections and knowledge needed for a new generation of innovative, creative storytelling by New Zealanders for New Zealanders, and continue our country’s reputation for excellence and a strong screen production industry that can compete globally.”
In 2023 we will welcome the first cohort of students to the Bachelor of Digital Screen (Hons) - a new, four-year degree focusing on six majors, industry partnership and work-integrated learning. With a record number of students enrolled, and design work on the redevelopment and construction of our Dovedale campus kicking into gear, we’re on our way to becoming Aotearoa New Zealand’s pre-eminent screen school!
Kiwi Game Starter competition
We continue to respond to the needs of the digital screen industries. This year UC sponsored the Kiwi Game Starter 2022 competition, a business start-up competition supporting the best of New Zealand’s up-and-coming game development talent. Talent shortage is one of the biggest issues facing both the digital screen industries and the tech sector. The Kiwi Game Starter competition provides game developers the opportunity to gain recognition, industry mentorship and strengthen their skills, supporting them in pursuing a career within the industry. UC’s Executive Director of Planning, Finance and ITS, Keith Longden says, “Digital screen industries within Aotearoa New Zealand can only grow and develop as long as we encourage, educate and develop talent for all critical roles, which is why it is important for the University to create and support opportunities like our Digital Screen Campus, and the Kiwi Game Starters competition.”
HIT Lab NZ celebrates 20 years of innovation!
The Human Interface Technology Laboratory NZ (HIT Lab NZ) at UC is celebrating two decades at the forefront of human interface technology research. Twenty years on, the HIT Lab NZ is going from strength to strength using VR, AR and applied immersive game design to achieve real-world solutions and have a positive impact on industry advancement in Aotearoa. Since it began, HIT Lab NZ has been heavily involved in supporting postgraduate research, and every year the team produces numerous research articles, posters, podcasts, and other research outputs.
Bachelor of Youth and Community Leadership
UC’s Bachelor of Youth and Community Leadership meets a growing need for innovative leaders who can make an impact on national and global challenges that youth and other communities are encountering. The degree develops professional leadership and entrepreneurial skills for those passionate about issues such as youth work and development, sustainability, human rights, equality, social entrepreneurship, and humanitarian work.
Career Services is here to help!
Career Services at UC is here to help our students and recent graduates. Support services are free for students and recent graduates to help them make career decisions confidently and intentionally. Students can meet one-on-one with qualified consultants to identify strengths, explore career and study options, and build work-ready skills. Help is also at hand with job-hunting strategies, CV, applications and interview practice. Further services include career development support, connecting students with employers, and there is also an Online Career Centre with free access to over 100 career resources that can build, track and boost a student’s professional profile with the latest career development tools.
Culturally responsive pedagogy
Our People, Culture & Development team and members from our Office of the AVC Māori have collaborated together to provide an opportunity for UC academic staff to explore, grow, develop and embed culturally responsive pedagogical approaches. This professional development programme covers more than an awareness of culture, to include an ability to utilise knowledge in cross-cultural situations and to develop and implement processes, procedures and practices that support the delivery of culturally competent and appropriate service provision, information dissemination, research, curriculum design and fully inclusive management practices.
Centre for Entrepreneurship
The Centre for Entrepreneurship provides students with opportunities to build capabilities in entrepreneurship and innovation. The Centre’s activities are connected with external organisations, enabling our students to gain real world hands-on experience. Programmes and events are open to all UC students regardless of the degree of year. We want to equip our graduates to have a real positive impact on society. Our mentors, experts and advisors work supportively with students to challenge, encourage, explore new concepts, and make things happen. The Centre also provides an avenue for students to gain experience working with growing startups so they can see what it really takes to grow business globally.
UC recognised 16 long-serving staff members through the Hui Whakamānawa | Celebrating Excellence awards, our annual awards to celebrate all staff successes and empower high-achieving staff to accomplish even more. “It must be very satisfying for our long serving staff members to know that they have been a part of helping educate and develop several generations of future leaders and citizens of our country and the world. Congratulations and thank you for such a significant contribution to our students and our research, and to the UC Community”, says Executive Director of People Culture and Campus.
Trading challenge competition
The CMC Markets UC Trading Challenge is an annual competition giving UC students an opportunity to put their investment strategies to practice with a range of financial derivative instruments, including cryptocurrencies, gold and silver commodities, forex and shares via the CMC Markets online trading platform. More than 200 teams, comprising of individuals or pairs, battled it out in real-world financial markets over four weeks. The contestants used a virtual fund of $250,000 to test their knowledge and trade for the best returns. Dr Moritz Wagner, UC Finance Lecturer says, “In recent times, we have seen extreme market turmoil and the gamification of investing via commission-free fintech apps. The annual trading competition provides students with an opportunity to apply their theoretical knowledge and develop further insights across a wide range of financial
products. In this safe environment, they can gain important skills for building successful careers.”
Possibilities for Adult Students
Stepping into university life as an adult can seem daunting, but we’re here to make the transition to adult study easy and enjoyable. UC defines adult students as students over the age of 20. We offer a diverse range of study options for our adult students, with over 120 qualifications in more than 150 different subject areas. Targeted additional support services are available to help ensure our adult students succeed, such as health and wellbeing care services, student advisors, academic skills programme, adult student orientation, and on-campus day-care services.
UC’s Business School course MKTG314 examines contemporary marketing strategies and issues in tourism. The course directly addresses 11 UN SDGs, for example, the sustainability of tourism,
and issues of gender in tourism with respect to roles and responsibilities. It provides a comprehensive framework for understanding the effects of tourism development at various scales, with examples from Aotearoa and internationally. Attention is given to the understanding of sustainable tourism, including sustainable development and consumption, “overtourism” and global environmental change.
Building a Sustainable Future in Tourism
Finding out what makes a business resilient will help owners and managers build a sustainable future in tourism. UC’s marketing and tourism expert, Professor Girish Prayag says there are several key pillars businesses can use to build resilience, including access to finances, adapting product offerings, relationships within supply chains, marketing, networks and community relationships, employee engagement and diversification. Professor Prayag explains: “Our research has shown that businesses that had done this prework had a more positive outlook and were able to adapt more quickly during COVID-19.” Professor Prayag is currently studying small to medium tourism and hospitality enterprises in Christchurch and wider New Zealand to understand what contributes to their resilience.
Career Advice, Jobs and Internships
Te Rōpū Rapuara | Careers team support UC students with a range of career and employment services. Career Consultants are available to discuss options and job prospects. Seminars are regularly delivered. Topics are broad, including job applications and interviews, employment agreements and negotiating salary. The team also connect employers and students, hosting career fairs and presentations. Jobs and internships are listed on the NZUniTalent jobs board. Our strong relationship with the Crusaders Rugby Club has provided internship opportunities for students in UC’s Bachelor of Sport Coaching programme, the only degree of its kind in Aotearoa. Undergraduate student, Kali Zygmant worked at Crusaders HQ, and Todd Andrews worked at the Crusaders gym while studying towards his Master’s degree in Sport Science.
We are committed to helping our staff achieve a healthy balance between work and the other important aspects of their lives. Where reasonably practicable, flexible working arrangements may be offered such as part-time work, job sharing, reducing responsibilities, or changing hours of work. Several learning and development programmes focus on supporting staff when navigating change or challenging times, and include in-person workshops and online resources. Recently, we launched the Mentemia App for staff and students, which offers on the go well-being tips and tricks.
FutureU study grants
FutureU launched in mid-2020, as a targeted response to help support affected businesses and employees following the COVID-19 outbreak. Many people faced redundancy, suspension or reduction in work hours. FutureU study grants provided the opportunity for people affected by COVID-19 to upskill or change careers. Study options ranged from short-term qualifications to our revamped Master of Business Administration, including various certificates and diplomas. FutureU was a unique opportunity for students enrolling in 2020, supporting the recovery of the New Zealand economy following the COVID-19 outbreak.