Well-known to many in Hawke’s Bay, Jenny Robertson has boomeranged back from Australia to take up her position as EIT’s new Head of School, Tourism and Hospitality and English Language Centre.
Jenny was lured across the Tasman two years ago when she was offered the job of marketing manager at Belvoir, an avant-garde theatre company based in Sydney’s Surry Hills.
It was a dream role for the former English and drama teacher. Along with other staff, she relished opportunities for watching actors fine-tune their performances and enjoyed taking up the many invitations to attend productions at theatres city-wide.
So yes, she owns, it’s been rather a wrench leaving that world behind.
“But it also feels lovely to be back on campus,” says the Napier Hill resident, who was EIT’s schools liaison officer for six years, up until 2003. “This job represents such a wonderful opportunity. It’s a new chapter for me, and a new challenge.”
Jenny’s teaching career includes six years each at Hastings Girls’ High School and Havelock North High School. She moved into marketing to promote Napier tourism attractions for a further eight years, working especially for the National Aquarium of New Zealand, Tourism Services Ltd and its more recent incarnation as the Napier City Council’s tourism services division.
Confident that her strong links with the region’s tourism and hospitality sector will stand her in good stead, she intends tapping into the knowledge and expertise of the region’s industry leaders.
In particular, she wants to strengthen the relationship between EIT’s School of Tourism and Hospitality and Hawke’s Bay Wine Country Tourism Association, the tourism departments of the Napier and Hastings councils and others involved in the regional tourism industry.
And in the meantime, any yearning for the bright city lights will be satisfied by a return trip to Sydney – a leaving present from the theatre company.