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New EIT degree aimed at learners with a passion for environmental issues

3 days ago

A growing interest in environmental issues and an identified shortage of expertise in the field has led EIT to offer a new Bachelor of Applied Science (Biodiversity Management) in conjunction with Unitec, from next year.

The degree, which will be offered from February 2023 by Te Pukenga (formerly EIT) in Hawke’s Bay, is aimed at people who want to upskill their environmental knowledge and those who want to stay in Hawke’s Bay while they study.

Lisa Turnbull, Programme Coordinator in EIT’s School of Primary Industries says the degree (level 7) follows on from the NZ Diploma in Environmental Management (Terrestrial strand) [Level 5] and the NZ Diploma in Environmental Management (Terrestrial strand) [Level 6].

“We’ve had the Diploma in Environmental Management at Level 5 and Level 6 for a couple of years now and we have been building up towards a degree, which will offer learners a three-year pathway.

“Up until now, the diploma has been popular with more mature students, but we are hoping that the new degree will attract school leavers.”

The new degree was highlighted at the recent Discovery Day event on EIT’s Hawke’s Bay Campus. Discovery Day, which EIT held in conjunction with the Napier City Council, Hastings District Council and the Hawke’s Bay Chamber of Commerce, aimed to enable senior secondary students (year 11-13) and the public to engage with employers, industry, and educators to discover the vast range of career options available locally and beyond.

Paul Keats, the Assistant Head of EIT’s School of Primary Industries, says school leavers who attended the event had shown great interest in the new Bachelor of Applied Science (Biodiversity Management).

“The school students were quite attracted to the fact that we are now offering the Bachelor of Applied Science (Biodiversity Management) , so we are hoping that number will build up over the next year or two.

“We are also forging links with local businesses, and they are quite keen to use our students in internships. One of the popular courses in the programme will be the Geographic Information System (GIS)  as we have discovered that people with GIS knowledge are in demand in the workforce.”

“I think there are a number of employment opportunities in Hawke’s Bay and there’s a shortage of expertise in the environmental field, which is growing. It also means that students can study in Hawke’s Bay and don’t have to travel away,” says Paul.

Subjects covered in the degree will include biosecurity, GIS, and negotiated research, while learners will also undertake advanced field surveying, restoration ecology, conservation science, and behavioural ecology.

Lisa and Paul say the School of Primary Industries continues to work on building close relationships with a number of partners, including regional and local councils, iwi and hapu and industry.

Paul Keats, the Assistant Head of EIT’s School of Primary Industries, believes EIT’s new Bachelor of Applied Science (Biodiversity Management) will attract learners with an interest in the environment.