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Desire to learn business skills led Fire and Emergency NZ officer to study at EIT | Te Pūkenga

November 20, 2023

Ed Hindmarsh is enjoying the Graduate Diploma in Business (Level 7) at Tairāwhiti campus of EIT | Te Pūkenga.

Having risen through the ranks of Fire and Emergency NZ (FENZ), Ed Hindmarsh realised that he needed greater skills and knowledge to apply to the workplace, so he decided to study at the Tairāwhiti campus of EIT | Te Pūkenga.

It is a decision that he does not regret and now he is on the cusp of completing his Graduate Diploma in Business (Level 7). Ed is currently a Senior Station Officer at the Gisborne Fire Station in Tairāwhiti.

“I joined Fire and Emergency New Zealand in 2003, and progressively worked my way through the ranks. When I got nearer to the officer ranks, I identified that I didn’t have any formal training to lead and manage teams. I believe now, 20 years later, it’s very clear that learning and developing is critical to getting great performance for an organisation, as well as individuals and teams.”

“I have certainly benefited from my business and leadership studies throughout my career with Fire and Emergency New Zealand.”

Ed’s association with EIT|Te Pūkenga began when it was still the Tairāwhiti Polytechnic, when he enrolled in the NZ Diploma in Business. He finished this in 2014, but as the years passed by, he always wanted to go further.

“As I progressed through the ranks and got into the more senior management roles, I knew that the organisation and teams that I lead would benefit from me having greater skills and knowledge to apply to the working environment.”

“So that’s why I chose to go back. Well, I’m still there.”

With work, his young family and outside horticultural interests filling up his time, Ed fits in his study as he can. He has another five papers to do and plans to get back into it again in the new semester next year.

Despite COVID-19 disruptions, Ed has enjoyed the programme, which he says has had a strong impact on his career.

“I think one of the most critical things is to get the workplace environment as positive as we can across all facets. It’s crucial have the right knowledge, skills and attributes for managing and leading to be able to impress that. It’s identifying little issues that you can foresee occurring and then nipping them in the bud immediately so that no one even knows that there was going to be an issue. That is what success looks like in our environment.”

Forty-one year old Ed says he will not hesitate to recommend EIT | Te Pūkenga to anyone looking to further their education.

“I’d recommend the EIT School of Business to anyone that has a desire to be a manager or to be a leader of people. If one wants to be effective in leadership, or enhance their leadership potential, then I’d definitely recommend a course of study like this.”

Joanna Frame, Programme Leader in the EIT | Te Pūkenga School of Business in Tairāwhiti, says: “It has been an absolute privilege to have been a part of Ed’s academic journey.”

“The Graduate Diploma in Business is the perfect qualification for ākonga such as Ed who have significant experience at a managerial level and are wanting to enhance their knowledge in a specialised area of business.”