Fono gives stu­dents a look at study op­tions

Auckland City Harbour News - - News - By Lisa Sloan

A ca­reer in busi­ness was some­thing Glo­ria Wendt had never con­sid­ered.

But a day at Unitec has given the St Mary’s Col­lege stu­dent a lot to think about.

The 17-year-old was among stu­dents from around Auck­land who at­tended a Pasi­fika Busi­ness Fono at Unitec this week.

The event aims to en­cour­age year 13 Pasifi stu­dents to study busi­ness and think about start­ing up their own com­pa­nies in the fu­ture.

Over the two-day event stu­dents lis­tened to guest speak­ers be­fore cre­at­ing a com­pany and de­sign­ing a prod­uct.

Glo­ria says the event opened up her eyes to new op­por­tu­ni­ties.

“There’s not that many Pa­cific Is­land peo­ple in busi­ness but hear­ing from peo­ple who started their own busi­ness in­spired me to think if they can do it, then of course we can,” she says.

“It gives us hope of be­ing suc­cess­ful and that’s pretty cool.”

This year is Unitec’s sec­ond Pasi­fika Busi­ness Fono. Stu­dents from 10 schools around Auck­land were in­vited to at­tend. They took part in work­shops and group ac­tiv­i­ties be­fore com­ing up with their own ideas for a com­pany and de­vis­ing a prod­uct.

Unitec Pasi­fika li­ai­son Terri Leo-Mauu says the fono is a chance for Pasi­fika stu­dents to see what Unitec can of­fer.

“We want to en­cour­age Pa­cific Is­land stu­dents into busi­ness and in­spire them to look at it as a ca­reer,” she says.

Ep­som Girls Gram­mar stu­dent An­gelina Akavola, 17, says it was good to hear about Pacifi Is­lan­ders who have been suc­cess­ful in busi­ness.

“To be around peo­ple who have been in busi­ness helps us to see ca­reer op­tions for the fu­ture,” she says. “Not many Pa­cific Is­lan­ders start a busi­ness on their own so it is good to see what it would be like.”

Photo: JA­SON OX­EN­HAM

Big busi­ness: Stu­dents Teare Tu­ataa, 17, An­gelina Akavola, 17, Unitec Pasi­fika li­a­son Terri Leo-Mauu, Glo­ria Wendt, 17, and Mag­gie Lega’aie, 18. The stu­dents took part in a Pasi­fika Busi­ness Fono held at Unitec.

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