Hato Hone St John
Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Team
"Interns have contributed greatly to the overall work I do and for me, the PACE programme has worked REALLY well"
Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Lead
Hato Hone St John
First time intern host, S2 2022
"My role is focussed on enhancing and supporting a work environment where everyone feels they are welcome and belong and can feel safe to be exactly who they are.
I’ve run two internships through my team - One focussing on comparing some of our current policies and guidelines relevant to DEI against t those of other organisations, not just in NZ but globally as well. This information will help us map global challenges and changes, to better understand how we can better support our staff and the communities we work with. The other is researching all the various days of significance which are celebrated over a 12-month period. This information will be sued to develop a calendar of DEI events that we can follow. This intern is also researching these dates to write descriptions of each event, the history of them, how/why they are important and how people can find out more or get involved. These descriptions are used as part of our communications plan to promote each event.
Interns have contributed greatly to the overall work I do and for me, the PACE programme has worked REALLY well. I have loved seeing them settle into the work environment and get their bearing on the projects and see them take off and develop with great enthusiasm. The only challenge I am aware of was one that was brought to my attention by the interns. This was about moving from a ‘study’ environment where there is structure and instructions, to a flexible working environment where they had the freedom to choose the specifics of the project and how they wanted to approach it. Once this was clarified that the project was theirs to shape, both went on to achieve great results.
The students get to work in an area specific to their interest so they are engaged, and the work makes their University requirements relevant. Our internships are flexible as we have a range of project areas that need attention. The other benefit is the students get to meet people from across the organisation and key stakeholders to see how their work fits in to a bigger picture. This has given interns great practice is settling in into an employment environment and how to navigate some of the relationships required.”