Seese Asalele’s home-made curries have inspired her son Anesi to study cookery at EIT.
From Samoa, the pair moved to Napier shortly before Anesi entered his teens. After completing his seventh form year at Napier Boys’ High School, he was accepted into Hawke’s Bay’s Maori and Pasifika Trades Training (MPTT) scheme last year.
The Government-funded initiative provides support and incentives aimed at encouraging students aged 18 to 34 to gain meaningful trade qualifications and apprenticeships. EIT offers a range of programmes that support a wide variety of trades and primary industries.
Twenty-year-old Anesi is currently working towards the New Zealand Certificate in Cookery (Level 4). His MPTT scholarship covers the fees for that as well as a further year of full-time study to complete the Level 5 New Zealand Diploma in Cookery (Advanced).
“I’m flying through and enjoying every moment of it,” the future chef says of EIT studies. “I’m meeting new people and making friends. And it’s not just theory, it’s also about getting on with other people and the chef tutors and learning new things as well. It’s so much fun.”
Rating EIT as “one of the nicest places”, Anesi urges other Pasifika people to look into programmes offered by the institute.
“If you are passionate about it, go for it,” he says.