EIT’s Head of School Passes

February 13, 2018

EIT’s former Head of School Viticulture and Wine Science Diane Marshall died peacefully in Hawke’s Bay’s Cranford Hospice on January 24.

Marshall retired in mid-2017 after 11-plus years as head of the school, rounding off a career in education that spanned more than 41 years.

EIT chief executive Chris Collins said she had shown leadership, commitment and passion in her role at EIT. 

Under her aegis, the school’s suite of programmes developed into New Zealand’s widest range of viticulture and wine science qualifications, with certificates, diplomas, bachelor degrees and graduate diplomas encompassing grape growing, winemaking, wine business and wine marketing.

It was during Marshall’s tenure that the Bachelor of Wine Science and the Bachelor of Viticulture became the first of EIT’s 12 bachelor degrees to be studied online as blended learning programmes. 

She also managed EIT’s longstanding relationship with Charles Sturt University in Australia, which underpinned the first years of the two degrees.

After gaining her Bachelor of Science degree, Marshall taught science at Mt Maunganui College, where she met her husband-to-be, languages teacher Terry Marshall.  The couple travelled overseas and, returning to New Zealand, secured positions at Taradale High School where Marshall taught for 19 years. 

The school’s assistant principal for eight years, she felt ready for a change when she enrolled in EIT’s Bachelor of Wine Science programme.  When the head of school position came up, several lecturers encouraged her to apply.

“They persisted and I’m glad they did,” she said.  “I loved the job and it kept me in contact with the wine industry and on the fringe of people doing research.”

Marshall also enjoyed being involved in the teaching of wine and viticulture and in helping students succeed – “particularly those who struggle and make it, that’s hugely satisfying.”

Other EIT highlights included staging three wine business symposiums that were well-supported by the industry and developing industry contacts including with retired grapegrower Kevyn Moore, who initiated the Bragato exchange scholarship for students at EIT and a viticultural school in northern Italy.

With her husband, Marshall travelled to the Cook Islands and explored wine regions in France last year.