Massey News Auckland •
Palmerston North •
Te Pürongo – 15 Mahuru, September 2008 Issue 14
http://news.massey.ac.nz © Massey University 2008
Pacific Washup shows at Busan Biennale
Emeritus Professsor honoured for literary skill
Taking Massey to the Pacific Page 8
Creative temporary sculpture series launched
continues page 2 Dr Mike Joy.
Whitebait disappearance a ‘canary in a coalmine’ warning on rivers
Whitebait disappearing from New Zealand’s waterways are an indicator of just how polluted our rivers and streams have become, Dr Mike Joy is warning.
“Even if you don’t think fish are cool or important, what this is telling us is that the state of the freshwater that we humans depend on is getting pretty bad,” Dr Joy says.
Dr Joy has spent the past 15 years researching whitebait and other freshwater fish, finding that whitebait have disappeared from around 75 per cent of their expected habitats in Manawatu and Horowhenua. The national group that monitors the fate of the adult whitebait (galaxiids) is reporting a similar level of disappearance.
“I recently attended a working group meeting in Gisborne and reports from all over the country are saying that the fish that were there 10 years ago cannot be found now. They are disappearing, and very fast.”
Dr Joy says the issue is complex, with impacts both on the quality of water in rivers affected by pollution and hill country erosion, which is sending sediment downstream. His group has tagged 150 galaxiids in the Mangahao Stream, a tributary
of the Manawatu River. The Mangaghao enjoys pure, clean water from diversion of rainfall from the top of the Tararua ranges into a hydroelectricity power station.
“There is one section of stream up there and adults go there and spawn every year. We have estimated 300 or 400 galaxiids can be sustained in every 200m stretch if the water is clean.”
Impairing the ability of rivers to sustain the fish is sediment.
Too much sediment washing into the habitat covers boulders.
Galaxiids “hang out” under the boulders and in the semi- dark during the day, Dr Joy says, only emerging at night.
“So it’s crucial that a stream has boulders and especially, spaces between those boulders because they are a mostly nocturnal fish.”
A key finding from the Mangahao study is that fish definitely prefer the cleaner water.
“We have taken huge 500-litre tanks of water from there and made the water flow through. When we put fish in they make a clear decision on which way to go – they have very good olfactory (smell) senses.
Colourful creative garments with a difference have netted high honours for three students who were finalists at Westfield Style Pasifika fashion awards show in Auckland recently.
For her entry in the Traditionally Inspired section, Morgan Cotton of Wellington, took her cues from traditional Maori clothing. Her design is three pieces - a bodice, piupiu (skirt), and cloak.
Cut-out and stencilled lettering of Miss Cotton’s whakapapa make up the bodice and are printed on the cloak.
She says her first major competition entry was
“time-consuming but worth it”, having spent “hours and hours” threading red tubing for the piupiu.
Stephanie Schilderink made the finals of the Asia Pasifika section with a dress made of organza and bamboo, inspired by her Filipino heritage.
Miss Schilderink, originally from Waihi, is in her third year of a Bachelor of Design, majoring in fashion design at the Wellington campus. This was her first major competition entry.
“I’m half Filipino, half Dutch so I really looked into the Filipino culture for this design,” she says. “A lot of people there have to stand on their own two feet from an early age. Life’s tough and the people have to be tough, just like the traditional Filipino huts.
“I based my design on the hut, using bamboo strips and light see-through copper organza to reflect communal living and the hut’s structure.”
All three students who were finalists are taking a fashion competition paper this year.
Philippa Lake, also a third-year Bachelor of Design student from Wellington, was a finalist in the Urban Pasifika Street Wear category with a black and white geometric dress (right) she made during a holiday break.
“When it was finished, mum said it looked like a Pasifika tattoo so I entered at the last minute.”
Top: Entry by Morgan Cotton.
Left inset: Entry by Stephanie Schilderink.
Right inset: Entry by Philippa Lake.
Culturally-inspired creativity puts
three Design students in Pasifika
2 Massey News - 15 Mahuru 2008 - Issue 14 Massey News - 15 September 2008 -Issue 14 19
15 Mahuru - issue 14
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Whitebait disappearance a warning on rivers
from page 1
“The analogy is a smoke-filled hallway in a building on fire. If you were trying to run out of the building you’d pick the cleaner hallway, and that’s what the stream is like for them.”
The dwindling numbers are further affected by the many New Zealanders catching the juveniles as whitebait, and selling them for up to $150/kg, Dr Joy says.
“Not enough galaxiids are able to return to the streams because of the whitebaiting. Two of those species have the same threat ranking as a Kiwi yet selling whitebait is a crucial incentive to get people out there. In the West Coast fishing stands sell for $60,000. Clearly, it’s an industry for some people.
”The Resource Management Act mentions trout specifically – these introduced fish can’t be sold and they have so much protection
¬– yet endemic and endangered whitebait species have no protection.
The trout fishery is probably the most sustainable fishery in New Zealand due to its
non-commercial status. If you could get $150 a kilo for trout, there would be a whole lot more people out there fishing for them – and fishing as hard as they could.”
Dr Joy says his computer modelling, which he has focused on the greater Manawatu catchment, shows him where the galaxiids should be, including the upper Oroua, upper Pohangina and upper Manawatu rivers.
“But they are not there, we have searched and searched for them.”
Four of the five galaxiid species spawn inland in forested areas, at a spring flood.
This makes them very susceptible to land use around them, Dr Joy says, while the fifth species spawns on a high spring tide around the tidal zone.
In all cases, the spawn hatch and are washed out to sea some weeks later, giving them a head start on their journey in the seas about New Zealand. Around six months later, the juveniles are a few centimetres long.
Returning to the rivers to the upstream home where they will spend their lives, the whitebait are fished from August to November.
Dr Joy says a few simple measures could protect what is left of the stocks: prohibiting the sale of whitebait in the same way trout is protected, minimising high-country erosion and cleaning up waterways from pollutants including sewerage and run-off.
He also believes better monitoring of waterways would provide a clearer picture of their state.
“On a motorway, if you simply measure the cars going through at 11am every morning you would possibly conclude that the motorway is way too big. But you are just measuring at one point in time. In the same way, taking a water quality sample in a flowing river at a set point in time doesn’t reflect what may have been discharged over a period.
“If we don’t do something quickly we won’t have these species any more.“
Dr Mike Joy and Masters student Amber McEwan electrofishing in the Tokomaru river.
15 September 2008 - issue 14
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A visual artist who uses human hair in her compositions opens her first solo exhibition in Hastings this week.
Aimee-Rose Stephenson received one of two $4000 Te Waka Toi scholarships at a ceremony in Wellington recently.
Ms Stephenson, 23, says some people feel uncomfortable when they see her work.
She is in her second year of a Masters of Mäori Visual Arts at the Palmerston North campus and is due to complete her degree in February. She joins a long line of Te Waka Toi scholars including Massey graduates Ngaahina Hohaia, Israel Birch, Glen Skipper, Aimee Ratana, Hemi MacGregor and Kelcy Taratoa.
“I’m humbled that my work was considered up to the standard of previous winners,” she says. “You apply to scholarships and you’re never sure how far you will get with it. I’m stoked to have won. The money will go towards my fees and help with course costs.”
She says there is a lot to consider, particularly from a Mäori perspective, when using a medium that is body matter.
“There are many issues for Mäori in relation
Aimee-Rose Stephenson appraises an IVF composition that was part of her winning Te Waka Toi scholarship application.
Artist puts human hair under the spotlight
to dealing with hair. Hair is regarded as tapu or sacred, and the head is an important and significant part of the body. Considerations include where you place it, what you hold it in and how you dispose of it.
“Hair is a potent material; I’m interested and inspired by the way the work is received.
People feel uncomfortable.”
She consults two of her uncles about tikanga (protocol) issues and says they are her major critics and were apprehensive about the use of hair.
“While they did not initially understand, they realise that I am using hair in my work to challenge my own tikanga. Art should challenge boundaries.
“I have put my own hair out there in a public place and gifted pieces to people. My hair is going into another person’s space, I no longer have control over where it is placed.”
She says she explored stitching with hair, and developed a microscopic composition depicting the in-vitro fertilisation process.
“Some people consider it to be an ineffable or taboo topic. I’m interested in how doctors consider hair from a scientific approach, as a
code for an individual’s DNA and researched the ideas about hair from Mäori and Päkeha cultures in New Zealand.”
The work submitted for her scholarship application contained images from her A Nice White Space exhibition, shown in 2006 at Te Manawa Museum, Gallery and Science Centre in Palmerston North. “The submission included a wheelchair lined - and mattresses made - with human hair.”
Ms Stephenson grew up in Palmerston North and is of Ngäti Kahungungu, Rongowhakaata, Ngäti Pahauwera ki Mohaka, Rangitäne ki Tämaki nui a Rua descent. Her parents are from Waipukurau and Waipawa in central Hawke’s Bay.
Her first solo exhibition Neither hair nor there, opens today at the Hastings Community Arts Centre.
“I decided to go home to where my whänau are from. I’m nervous, as it will be my first solo show.
“I’ve moved away from ovarian and scientific images to stitching indicative kupu [words] with and about hair, its removal and its bodily location.”
A Massey University-led proposal for a major food technology centre in Manukau City that could reap $3.5 billion in new added-value food products is under consideration by the Government’s Fast Forward Board.
Food Technology Professor Ray Winger says he is “very excited” that a decision on government funding of $9 million to create a state-of-the-art innovation centre to provide leading-edge research and commercialisation facilities to the 562 food manufacturers in the area has just been referred to the board after consideration by a team of government officials last week.
Professor Winger, Director of Massey’s Institute of Food, Nutrition and Human Health in Auckland, has been pushing for the creation of the centre for the past five years. The long-term project is part of a national initiative involving food innovation centres in Waikato and Canterbury, as well as drawing on
Massey’s food science and technology expertise in Palmerston North and Auckland.
In a presentation to the New Zealand Institute of Food Science and Technology recently, he reiterated the purpose of the centre in Manukau as a means of enabling food manufacturers to develop new products for the national and international markets.
Professor Ray Winger.
Decision closer on major food tech centre
“The current lack of innovation centres is the biggest constraint to commercialisation and added-value production of foods in New Zealand,” Professor Winger says.
“We have companies in Auckland collectively generating more than $8 billion in revenue who have to go overseas to do their development work - giving away their intellectual property and speed to market.
“It’s a fundamental market failure and one that ideally suits government intervention.”
The board will be briefed on the project on 6 October, and would be likely to announce its decision early next year. New Zealand Fast Forward is an initiative set up to distribute $700 million in government funds to boost food and pastoral agricultural sectors. Its board is made up of seven industry representatives.
The government contribution, to be allocated over a 10-15 year period, is to be matched by private sector investment.
Professor Winger says a centre in Manukau would provide the Auckland region with an unparalleled opportunity to show the world how innovative New Zealanders are and to accentuate Auckland’s place as the “food bowl of the Pacific”.
The potential spin-offs for the region in terms of employment, economic benefits and the food and beverage industry transformation are enormous, he says.
Professor of physics Tony Signal is on the international team working to replicate the
“big bang” that created the Universe.
Professor Signal says he has been involved with some of the design of the experiment, which will use the world’s most powerful particle accelerator, the new Large Hadron Collider, to collide two beams of protons.
“Hopefully we’ll see all sorts of new things,”
he says. “Obviously the number one thing people are looking for is the Higgs particle which is responsible for the masses of all the other particles. The way we think about mass is really to say how strongly other particles interact with the Higgs, some interaction is very weak and they are not affected while some have very strong interaction. This is really important because it explains the mass of everything and is the last piece of the jigsaw missing in the standard model of physics.”
Professor Signal, who is chairman of the New Zealand group collaborating with the project, says another area of interest is the mysterious “dark matter”.
“What everybody is really hoping is to see something new and unexpected. This could be hopefully be an explanation of dark matter – there’s much more in the universe than what we can see. The dark matter is something we can’t explain using normal physics.”
The organisation running the collider project is known as CERN, using the French acronym for the European Organisation for Nuclear Research. It has built a 27km tunnel at its facility on the Swiss-French border.
The proton beams have been tested in a clockwise direction, and will now be tested anti-clockwise, with the two beams fired into each other later this year.
“The beams are less than the width of a
University physicist on world particle team
Professor Tony Signal.
hair,” Professor Signal says. “They have to enter the tunnel and be precisely aimed to hit each other. When they collide there’s lots of energy and that’s when we hope to see new particles or phenomena coming out. The energy densities we are looking at are really comparable [to the big bang] but the size is very, very much smaller.”
The New Zealand team was involved in the design of the experiment including part of the central detector, near the collision point.
They have also worked on ensuring the beams
enter the experimental apparatus correctly so they can collide at the centre.
Professor Signal says he is closely monitoring his computer from the Palmerston North campus to watch the experiment unfold.
“Being part of the experiment, we have full access to all the data it will churn out and will try and do some analysis of that in New Zealand using our computers connected to the grid.”
He says he hopes to have completed some analysis by the end of the year.
New Zealand is represented at South Korea’s Busan Biennale 2008 by a work featuring the iconic striped plastic holdall bags used around the world.
The sea art festival component of the biennale entitled Voyage Without Boundaries is being held at Gwangalli Beach, Busan and features Pacific Washup, a work created by Massey Mäori visual arts lecturer Rachael Rakena and two New Zealand-born Samoan performance artists, Fes Fa’anana and Brian Fuata, during a collaborative residency in Sydney in 2003. The biennale opened on 6 September and includes 200 artworks by artists from more than 40 countries.
Ms Rakena says Pacific Washup (a six- minute video installation) is in DVD format and so is the easiest artwork to transport.
She says once it has been shown in Korea it will have travelled to 10 countries, and been to more places than she has. It has been on show in Australia and New Zealand, Britain, France, Germany, the United States, Thailand, Lithuania and Poland.
“It travels easy, unlike a painting or installation that can take a week to install, with this all you need is a DVD player and screen,”
she says. “It features people washing up on
Pacific Washup shows at Busan Biennale
Bondi Beach wearing the striped bags and was a collaboration with Mr Fa’anana and Mr Fuata.”
Brisbane-based Mr Fa’anana is the director of Australia’s only Pacific Islanders’ festival, which was held in Brisbane. Mr Fuata is a writer and theatre-maker, currently working as a drama tutor in London.
Voyage Without Boundaries are tales about harbours as first contact points. All stories indicate that historical consequences can be reinterpreted through artistic imagination and possible reconstruction of events.
“There is a mix of Mäori and Pacific people who feature in the bags on the beach,” Ms Rakena says.
“We were trying to portray the notion of migration across the Pacific, arriving in new lands and having to learn a different language and culture.
“The plastic bags are iconic all over the world; Australians associate them with refugees, Samoan people use them to transport food, Mäori use them to take their bedding to the marae, others for storage and in Venice last year, I saw them used for collecting rubbish.
“At the time of making this work, Australia
Still image from Pacific Washup.
was dealing with immigration issues. Boat people were landing on beaches in north Australia and had been sent away unprocessed as refugees, contrary to international law.
“Back then there were about 26,000 Mäori and 43,000 Pacific people living in Sydney. We incorporated themes of cultural alienation, dislocation, and displacement experienced by immigrants into the work as well as a vision of a brighter future and survival of their cultures and communities.”
Ms Rakena was accompanied to the Biennale by Mäori visual arts masters student Kylie Tiuka. “I have invited Kylie to attend as I am at the stage where I think it is important to share the experience of exhibiting at international events with others.”
Expenditure is the overarching theme of the biennale – a major concept of the philosopher George Bataille – meaning consumption, discharge and emission. The biennale will highlight the aspect of expenditure and consumption, rather than excessive production.
As well as the sea art festival, there will also be a contemporary art festival based at the Busan Museum of Modern Art and a sculpture project at Naru Park.
Visiting artist Daniel Belton’s work has won over festivals in Europe and looks set to do the same in Palmerston North during the coming months.
The Dunedin-based dancer, choreographer and filmmaker has taken up a residency in the School of English and Media Studies until the end of October.
Mr Belton is a graduate from the New Zealand School of Dance. He has performed with many New Zealand and overseas companies. His dance films have been shown at more than 70 international festivals.
His work After Durer recently won the prize for most innovative work at the Festival Internazionale di Videodanza in Naples, Italy, while a more recent work, Matchbox, has been accepted by several other festivals.
He says finishing the editing of Matchbox is a priority while at the Palmerston North campus.
Visiting artist brings internationally acclaimed work to city
“But I’m also doing some research, using the fantastic library here, on a new piece about the archetypal clown and storyboarding another short film about a robot toy.”
Mr Belton says the artist in residence post gives him both the time and money to work intensely on new projects.
“It’s also good to have other creative writers around the school to work through ideas with,”
he says. “Having the opportunity to contribute to the drama papers run by Dr Angie Farrow is also very rewarding.”
A screening of his recent work will be held at the Palmerston North City Library on Wednesday, 24 September. His work is also being screened at the Film Archive in Wellington throughout this month.
Mr Belton will be involved in the Festival of New Arts, which begins early next month and features drama, music, poetry and visual art at venues in Palmerston North.
Visiting artist Daniel Belton.
A vital figure in the formation of the University’s history department has been honoured with a 2008 Prime Minister’s Award for Literary Achievement.
Emeritus Professor WH (Bill) Oliver was awarded the prize last Tuesday night for his work in the non-fiction field. The award, worth $60,000, was presented by Prime Minister Helen Clark at Premier House in Wellington.
Feilding-born Professor Oliver was the foundation professor of history at Massey.
He taught at the Palmerston North campus from 1964 until 1983 and now lives in Wellington.
His has written extensively on New Zealand history and his books include The Story of New Zealand (1960) and the first volume of the Dictionary of New Zealand Biography.
He has specialist knowledge of Treaty of Waitangi claims and has published several volumes of poetry.
Professor Oliver received an honorary doctorate in literature from the university in 2000 and last year the WH Oliver Lecture was established by the School of History, Philosophy and Classics in recognition of his contribution to history and the humanities.
Kerry Howe, a Distinguished Professor at the School of Social and Cultural Studies who worked with Professor Oliver for a decade, describes his work as “incisive and important”.
“At work he was quietly inspirational, very low key, very understated,” Professor Howe says. “But when he spoke it was very elegant. He has a very very sharp mind.”
The awards are administered by Creative New Zealand.
Other recipients last week were Elizabeth Smither for her poetry and Lloyd Jones for fiction.
Each receives $60,000 in recognition of their significant contribution to New Zealand literature.
Bill Oliver honoured for literary skill
Historian and writer Bill Oliver with Prime Minister Helen Clark.
Distinguished Professor Gaven Martin is this year’s recipient of the Hector Medal in Mathematical and Information Sciences, awarded by the Royal Society.
Professor Martin is a founding Professor of the New Zealand Institute for Advanced Study, a world-leading centre for theoretical research and fundamental scholarship, and is based at the Auckland campus. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of New Zealand.
The award is in recognition of Professor Martin’s “deep and wide-ranging contributions to the theory of Kleinian groups, geometric function theory and other fundamental parts of modern mathematics, including the solution of a number of difficult and long-standing problems,” the society says.
Hector Medal for mathematician
Distinguished Professor Gaven Martin.
A tribute to life-saving asthma research captured in a painting by a final-year Massey student was officially launched on 3 August at the University of Otago’s Wellington School of Medicine library.
Keila Martin’s work, Inhaler Pile, celebrates the determination of four researchers who worked to prove asthma drug fenoterol was the cause of increased asthma mortality in New Zealand in the 1980s.
The researchers involved were Dr Richard Beasley (NZ Medical Research Institute director), Dr Julian Crane and Dr Carl Burgess (both department of medicine at Otago’s school of medicine in Wellington), and Dr Neil Pearce, who now heads Massey’s Centre for Public Health Research.
Artist Keila Martin with her work, Inhaler Pile.
Wellington’s Schaverien family commissioned the painting. Jane Schaverien, whose daughter Polly was severely affected through the use of fenoterol, described the researchers as “four heroes who fought a dragon”.
Mrs Schaverien believes their work saved her daughter’s life, as well as the lives of many others. She hopes the painting will inspire future researchers.
The four researchers formed the Wellington Asthma Research Group at the school of medicine in 1988.
Their work forced the eventual withdrawal of fenoterol, despite strong opposition from the pharmaceutical company manufacturing it, and many medical professionals.
Artwork celebrates life-saving asthma research
Ms Martin, who is set to finish her Bachelor of Fine Arts majoring in painting at Massey’s Wellington campus this year, says Inhaler Pile reflects her admiration of the researchers’
“The intense research process was quite a key idea for me,” Ms Martin says. “It was my first commissioned work and quite challenging.
I am quietly pleased with it.”
Head of the School of Fine Arts, Professor Jeremy Diggle, who coordinated the competition to find an artist to work on Mrs Schaverian’s commission, was also at the launch.
Professor Pearce wrote a book, Adverse Reactions: The Fenoterol Story, about the research.
An exhibit celebrating the life and work of novelist and playwright Samuel Beckett is currently on display at the Palmerston North campus.
Samuel Beckett won the Nobel Prize for literature in 1969. The exhibition was devised to celebrate the centenary of his birth in 1906.
It has taken two years to get to New Zealand because of the demand elsewhere – in libraries, universities, and cultural centres such as London’s Barbican.
The exhibit was displayed in the Wellington Public Library before coming to Massey, where it is on display on the upper floor of
the Social Science Lecture block for the next three weeks. It may be viewed at any time during weekdays.
Last week, members of the School of English and Media Studies hosted a tour of the exhibit where several pieces of Beckett’s work were acted and read. Professor Dick Corballis led the tour and read a short passage from Waiting for Godot and students performed Come and Go.
The display will be replaced early next month by a similar set devoted to novelist James Joyce, who was a close friend of Beckett’s.
Samuel Beckett exhibit on display at campus
Leigh McLennon, Dione Joseph and Roslyn Craig act out a work by Samuel Beckett in front of the exhibit.
While Pacific leaders discussed climate change and its threat to Oceanic communities at the 39th Pacific Islands Forum in Niue recently, Massey Pasifika representatives were on hand to encourage more Pacific Islanders to undertake study that could provide solutions to the issue.
Tevita Funaki, Pasifika students’ liaison adviser for the University and its Pasifika@
Massey strategy, attended the annual get- together of Pacific Rim heads of state last month as an observer and ambassador for the University.
He says being at the forum was a fantastic opportunity to network with Pacific leaders from diverse fields and to showcase specific educational opportunities of interest to prospective students. He also came across a number of high-profile Massey alumni from around the Pacific, including the Premier of Niue, Toke Talagi.
Agriculture, aviation, health and environmental planning were among knowledge areas of key importance to Pacificans, says Mr Funaki, but access to tertiary education was often problematic because of cost and distance.
North Shore businesses were quick to sign up for the first of a series of workshops on entrepreneurship.
The five-week course is the first of its kind in New Zealand, run by the University’s business incubator the e-centre and lecturer Dr Marco van Gelderen. It is designed for those wanting to start a business and for existing business owners wanting to boost their entrepreneurial skills.
Dr van Gelderen, who is based in the Department of Management and International Business, specialises in the psychology of enterprising behaviour.
He says the critical factors for enterprise and success that make up the framework of
Tevita Funaki with Niue Premier and Massey alumnus Toke Talagi at the recent Pacific Islands Forum in Niue.
Taking Massey to the Pacific
Mr Funaki says one of his key concerns in talking to education leaders at the forum was ensuring they knew about the range of study scholarships available to Pacific Islanders so they could promote them at home.
Without such scholarships – provided by government, Commonwealth and aid schemes – the cost of tertiary education was prohibitive to many.
Another concern for Pacific Island parents was pastoral care for their young people while studying in New Zealand.
Mr Funaki says Massey offers a “double layer of support” through its International Office as well as its Pasifika@Massey strategy. Study support centres on each of its three campuses for Pasifika students, mentoring and research seminars for people undertaking Pacific research were among services provided by Massey as part of its unique strategy.
Launched two years ago, the strategy aims to encourage more Pacific Islanders to enrol in tertiary education, as well as to promote more Pacific-oriented research and collaboration between academics and community, business and government organisations.
Businesses sign up for workshops
The “emotion revolution” that has taken place in language learning was the focus of this month’s professorial lecture, presented by the College of Humanities and Social Sciences.
Professor Cynthia White’s lecture, entitled Language Learning Beyond Reason − Why Emotions Matter, discussed why emotion is important when understanding how a person learns a language.
“While learners have made reference to the fact that it’s an intensely emotional experience, the significance has largely been ignored,” Professor White says.
The importance of understanding the emotional journey when learning a language will be put in three different contexts:
distance learning, one-on-one learning and the experiences of refugees in a new country.
“Learning a new language is a profoundly unsettling proposition,” Professor White says. “So understanding those emotions will help make it easier to do.”
Next month’s speakers in the Professorial Lecture Series are Professor Richard Corballis with Alan Sanson - The Race for Relativity: How the Hero of James Joyce’s Ulysses almost Forestalled Albert Einstein’s Theories, to be held on 8 October
emotional impact of language learning
Courier company Inter City Urgent was winner of the University’s Excellence in Technology Award at the recent Westpac Enterprise North Shore Business Excellence Awards.
The North Shore-based company has implemented a simple-to-use GPS tracking system for client identification of shipped goods throughout New Zealand.
The judging panel said Inter City Urgent has created a near real time dispatch and fleet management system to provide more accurate and current information to its clients.
“This is a great example of Kiwi innovation and can-do attitude to problem solving,” the judges said.
The courier operation ranges from urgent deliveries to large freight jobs and moves items from single envelopes to tonnes of goods.
Last year the company won the service delivery category, and was a finalist in the innovation category.
Technology award to courier company
his course are: convincing others, networking, taking action, developing a vision, recognising opportunities, taking risks and persevering
Dr van Gelderen says there is a wealth of research on the behaviour that relates to enterprise that can be easily understood by people who want to set up a successful business.
“I am showing business people how to apply state-of-the-art research to their own context and how to study and practice the soft skills that underlie entrepreneurship.”
The workshops are part of the e-centre’s management series, supported by Enterprise North Shore, the Tindall Foundation and the David Levene Charitable Trust.
Pre-natal exposure to farm animals and plants helps protect children from asthma, allergies and eczema.
Researchers from the Centre for Public Health Research discovered farmers’ children had a lower incidence of allergic diseases than children not exposed to animals, grain and hay products. The findings have been published in the European Respiratory Journal.
Associate Professor Jeroen Douwes says it is the first study to show a direct link between exposures in-utero and a significant reduction in asthma symptoms, hay fever and eczema.
“The risk is further reduced if children are currently exposed to farm conditions and that suggests that current exposures play a role in the continued protection against disease later in life.”
The research team surveyed 1333 farmers’ children and a reference group of 566 children aged from five to 17 years for the study.
It found that children with both pre-natal and current exposure to farm
Associate Professor Jeroen Douwes.
Research shows farm kids breathe easier
animals were 50 per cent less likely to have asthma than the reference group. Similar results were found for other allergic diseases such as eczema and hay fever.
Dr Douwes says a more detailed study of infants is needed to fully understand the link between exposure and reduction of disease.
“We need more information from pregnant women and their children, so we are continuing to recruit participants to the study,” Dr Douwes says. “In future, we may be able to develop a vaccine that could mimic exposure, or outline how people could make lifestyle changes to reduce the risk of allergic disease.”
The team is looking for pregnant women, mothers and children from both rural and urban areas from the lower North Island, including Taranaki, Taihape and Hawke’s Bay.
Women who are interested can contact the centre’s research nurse Heather Duckett on 0800-000-544.
The University’s business accelerator unit, the e-centre, chalked up another success when a company under its wing scooped the Telecommunications Users Association’s Innovator of the Year Award.
The awards are presented annually at a gala event for both the largest and smallest players in the telecommunications sector. Less than a year after coming into the e-centre with her on-line budgeting system, Grace Xue has won the inaugural innovator award for her unique business, Who Stole My Money.
Ms Xue believes she is one of the smallest enterprises ever to be among the association’s winners. She was also runner-up in the commerce category of the awards, behind Kiwibank’s mobile internet banking scheme.
Ms Xue’s www.whostolemymoney.com was
Grace Xue, founder of award-winning business Who Stole My Money, and e-centre chief executive Steve Corbett.
e-centre business nets innovation award
founded just over a year ago and has 4000 members. Believed to be the world’s first on- line personal money management system, it tracks data from the user’s bank transactions to sort into spending categories.
Subscribers to the award-winning budgeting system can see their personal spending in several categories including groceries, entertainment and accommodation. They can also set up a spending plan and receive an on-line warning if they are close to the budget limit.
Ms Xue says bringing her product to the e- centre and having the centre’s chief executive Steve Corbett as a mentor has been very significant in accelerating the development of her company.
“Although the product was well developed
when I came to the e-centre, I have been very lucky to have the people here working alongside me,”she says. Now it is very nice to have recognition from the industry experts.”
To read the latest in news from Massey, complete with colour pictures and video clips visit us online: http://news.massey.
An adventurous public artwork by fine arts senior lecturer Maddie Leach has launched One Day Sculpture, a nationwide series of temporary artworks.
Miss Leach recently created Perigee #11;
the first of 21 works in the series. The piece involved three key parts: a renovated cedar- lined boatshed in Wellington’s Breaker Bay, the specified 24-hour time period, and weather forecasts made a year ago by forecaster Ken Ring for a huge storm on 28 August. The forecasts were published in newspapers as part of the work.
Miss Leach says the weather on the day being the opposite of the forecast added to the exhibit.
“My work often has a sense of expectation of what people bring to the work. If the storm had turned up, it would have been a very different work.”
The storm would have been viewed from the boatshed, had it hit, Miss Leach says, the boatshed itself about “what was original and what was new”.
Students primed for day at the races
The racing set had some competition in the fashion stakes at Palmerston North on Saturday when students went trackside.
Student day at the races was an event organised by sports management student Zandra Turner as part of her practicum paper.
Ms Turner worked with the Awapuni racecourse for the year and says Saturday’s event was a fun day out for students.
“Sponsors were very generous, so there are lots of prizes to give away in categories such as best dressed and best hat.”
The event was held in the Eulogy Room at the racecourse with a $30 ticket giving the buyer a buffet lunch and free drinks.
Working with the racecourse company has provided many opportunities, she says.
“My phone book has probably tripled in size since I started my practicum and working here has helped prepare me for the transition from student to professiona.”
Creative temporary sculpture series launched
“There were very strong differences outside and inside.”
Miss Leach says her work was a commentary on risk, expectation and speculation. “The work is about potential. Does it fail because the storm’s not there? No, I knew it was very possible it wasn’t going to eventuate. Weather forecasting is an inexact science.”
Project director and Associate Professor in fine arts David Cross says One Day Sculpture took on a life of its own in the planning stages.
“It takes a look at temporary sculptural practice and is hugely ambitious. We aim to produce outstanding work in the field of public sculpture.”
One Day Sculpture is coordinated by Litmus, the School of Fine Arts’ research centre. The event involves 21 artworks across five New Zealand centres. Six of the 21 were commissioned by Litmus. A book about the series is also planned.
For more information go to: www.
Zandra Turner sells tickets to the student day at the races at the Palmerston North campus.
New e-learning advisor
The College of Education has appointed Simon Atkinson as its new Strategic e-Learning Advisor.
Mr Atkinson, who will be based at Hokowhitu is an educational developer with specialist interests in the future of education in the light of technologically driven social change.
He comes to Massey from the University of Hull in Britain, where he was the acting director of the Learning and Teaching Support Unit, and also the head of e-learning.
The chance to create a prototype for an on- line banking security device for IBM gave final-year students at the Auckland School of Design a taste of international banking’s most challenging issues recently.
The project was part of a seminar and studio workshop series run by visiting Swiss integrated design consultant Alexandre Robert.
Mr Robert spent three weeks bringing the fourth-year design students at University’s design school in Auckland up to date with the latest international developments in integrated design – the industry buzz-word for a new approach towards more holistic design and product development. He says integrated design, including “interface” or “interactive”
design, requires an understanding of all the design components, from visual, branding and marketing to technical, functional and sustainable features.
School regional director Azhar Mohamed
says the design workshop demonstrated the importance of integrated design.
“Designers work not only on hardware and interface solutions, but also question and propose the way we interact with products and systems,” Mr Mohamed says. “Mr Robert’s visit is very timely as we are currently working to establish research co-operations with local and international partners.”
As a product/interaction designer working as vice-president for customer experience for financial services company Credit Suisse, Mr Robert set students the task of applying integrated
design theory to the creation of a device that IBM laboratory research technicians hade been struggling with.
He says IBM’s model, a hand-held gadget plugged into the user’s computer for
Alexandre Robert holding a mock- up of a desktop banking device.
Design students tackle online banking project
A new degree in veterinary technology will help address New Zealand’s vet shortage.
Veterinary science programme director Professor Norm Williamson says the three-year Bachelor in Veterinary Technology will be both applied and academic, providing graduates that can give hands-on and management support for vets.
“There is a recognised vet shortage within New Zealand and this will help reduce the person-power issue. By rationalising vet activity and having well-trained support people we can free up vets’ time. Work for veterinary technologists could include radiology, it could be on- farm work like ultrasound scanning or blood sampling, and even record collection, collation and analysis.”
Vet technology graduates are already well accepted internationally, with established courses in the United States, Canada and Australia.
“It’s part of an international trend and it’s analogous to having paramedical and para-dental professionals,” Professor Williamson says. “There is also an opportunity for the veterinary technologists to focus their studies, completing their final year in a large animal, equine,
New vet tech graduates will boost vet workforce
small animal or business and management tracks.”
The first students will begin study at the Palmerston North campus in February. Open entry allows all students who qualify for university entrance to undertake a pre-selection first semester, the same procedure and pre-selection semester as is used for Bachelor of Veterinary Science students.
Progress into the veterinary technology degree will be dependent on grades, documentation of 10 days of practical work experience and an application essay.
The three-year course includes basic physics, chemistry and biology, progressing to anatomy and physiology, pharmacology, diagnostic procedures animal production, and advanced clinical studies. It is anticipated that around 30 students will graduate each year.
The University has also defined a conversion programme allowing people who have qualified from Massey with a Diploma in Veterinary Nursing to complete the Bachelor of Veterinary Technology in a shorter timeframe. Around 25 vet nurses graduate from the University each year and about 95 vets.
A new initiative taking student teachers out of the classroom and into the community gets underway this week.
The University’s teaching students will now have a first-hand knowledge of the communities they will teach in, as a new initiative takes them out of the classroom and involves them with local organisations.
For the first time, More than 100 first- year education students will undertake a community placement as part of their three- week practical teaching experience.
Professor of Teacher Education John O’Neill says students can learn a lot about teaching through hands-on experience within local communities.
“A community placement lets them learn from those who have wisdom and expertise in supporting community development,”
Professor O’Neill says. ‘
“Community participation gives them
another view on teaching and learning.
“We are determined that our students should have at least one significant learning experience based in their local community, to enable them to better contextualise the big issues of globalisation, social justice and environmental sustainability,” he says.
Two weeks will be spent, as usual, in a primary school classroom under the guidance of an associate teacher from the school. In the third week, students will be hosted by a community organisation.
Professor O’Neill says the idea is to approach groups and organisations to provide community learning environments for student teachers.
“Community-based groups up and down the country have really come on board with this initiative.
“We would not be able to do this without their willingness to host our students.”
Local organisations involved include the Department of Conservation, the Cancer Society, Barnados KidStart, the Salvation Army, the Manawatu Ethnic Council, Palmerston North Community Arts Council, the YMCA, SPCA and Special Olympics.
“Some students have already suggested quite ambitious building or restoration projects for next year that would enable them to contribute in a concrete way to their community,” Professor O’Neill says.
‘‘That tells us a lot about the value of this placement initiative and about the community mindedness of the future teachers Massey is preparing.”
The University redesigned its primary teaching programme to meet the diverse needs of New Zealand learners and their communities, and the first new graduates will emerge in 2011.
Students to muck-in with community groups
additional security to protect customers from online hackers, was technically proficient but not easy to operate.
He also teaches interaction design at the Lucerne University of Applied Art and Design and plans to return to Zurich, Switzerland, with the students’ designs to see if IBM is interested.
The school, part of the College of Creative Arts, recently launched a new Integrated Design Research Centre to undertake research and teaching focused on the merging of two-dimensional and three- dimensional design disciplines. It will offer an Integrated Design programme from 2010 as a new major within the Bachelor of Design (Honours).
One of the world’s rarest penguins has enjoyed a three-week stay at the University’s wildlife ward. After almost doubling its arrival weight, a young adult hoiho (yellow-eyed penguin) is to return to Otago tomorrow and, hopefully, find a mate.
Wildlife vet Dr Roberto Aguilar says the penguin was found extremely emaciated on the Wellington coast. It was initially cared for by the Native Bird Rescue Wellington Trust and was then moved to Massey’s specialist wildlife facility.
“It was a young adult and whether it had swum or followed a wrong current, it was very thin and extremely dehydrated. It was doing what we call hock-sitting, where it is unable to stand up properly,” Dr Aguilar says.
Yellow-eyed penguins are a true sub-Antarctic species, Dr Aguilar says, and the penguin was either lost or at the very least wandering to have arrived at the North Island. Staff at the wildlife ward, which is sponsored by Shell New Zealand, did the usual medical tests but found nothing other than some parasites.
“We treated those and short of being debilitated there was nothing else wrong,” Dr Aguilar says. “It may just have had what we call mal- adaption, that is he just didn’t know how to survive properly without access to proper food.
“We started feeding it, making sure it got enough energy and it started coming around pretty fast. It has gone from 3.5kg to 5.3kg and it’s gaining about 100g a day. It now looks pudgy, which is good because it’s the fat store that protects them from the environment.”
Although it is not known whether the penguin is male or female, it is being sent back to the Otago Peninsula early tomorrow, so that it will be able to find a mate.
Department of Conservation programme manager David Agnew says the penguin will be taken straight to a site where there are no dogs and the area is bordered by public conservation land.
“We will just let it go on the edge of the vegetation and allow it find its feet - find its way into the sea to fish when it is ready,” Mr Agnew says.
He says there are about 470 breeding pairs in the South Island, with the rest of the 6000-7000 population on Stewart and the sub-Antarctic islands. The penguin will be tagged so that if it is picked up again by the department its history will be available.
The penguin is named for its distinctive yellow headband and yellow iris, with the Mäori name hoiho referring to its shrill call. Some hoiho can live until their 20s, with the birds reaching 65cm and 5.5kg.
Feeding time: Wildlife vet Dr Roberto Aguilar takes care not to get his fingers munched.
Hoiho on mend after rest at veterinary hospital
Flexible learning environments and shared decision-making help create a sense of security for children and teachers that strengthens learning, according to new research findings by the University’s Child Care Centre at Palmerston North.
A team of seven researchers, led by centre director Faith Martin and colleague Raewyne Bary, and guided by Dr Barbara Jordan and Cushla Scrivens, the research associates, carried out a study that focused on relationships between teachers, children and families. It questioned the ways in which educational leadership impacted on infants’ and toddlers’
levels of enquiry – their propensity to try new things and ask questions.
The research investigated a collaborative teaching structure, where such things as the absence of rosters and a hierarchical leadership system allows teachers to create a learning environment based on the needs of the children.
Ms Martin says a sense of security is developed when staff are able to manage and own their teaching environments, and it brings about benefits for the children.
“Children feel secure in a learning environment that is shaped around their needs,” she says. “Consistent, long-term relationships between teachers and children also supported children’s individual learning and resilience.”
Trust and security key to pre-schoolers’ learning
Ms Bary says the research found that infants and toddlers are more inclined to enquire if they feel secure.
“Children are researchers,” she says. “They flourish when they are allowed to develop their own working theories and step outside the status quo.”
The research also found that when infants and toddlers were not feeling secure (for reasons to do with health, family circumstances or relationships) their level of enquiry diminished.
It found that an indication of this is shown in the way that the children have displayed a
strengthened disposition to enquire, which has endured over time and into new situations.
The research concluded that the development of an organisational culture which supports shared knowledge and leadership among staff, has fostered a climate of trust enabling teachers to work collaboratively and develop ways of working with infants and toddlers that supports their learning.
The three-year project was commissioned by the Ministry of Education as part of the Centre of Innovation programme to improve the quality of early childhood services in New Zealand.
Zinzan Deans gets hands-on with his learning.
The Manawatu rugby team has improved on the field this year but Massey University students have been helping it excel off it as well.
Three third-year sports management students are working with the Manawatu Rugby Union as part of their practicum paper, continuing a 15-year relationship between the union and the University.
Senior management lecturer Dr Andy Martin says it is a valuable experience.
“It gives them the opportunity to establish a strong network of contacts within the sport industry,” Dr Martin says. “These practical experiences provide a point of difference that future employer’s value.”
Mike Wootton is the assistant event manager for the Turbos’ home games. His role involves planning and organising crowd entertainment, volunteers, security and the half-time show.
Rachel O’Connor has been selling the popular students packs that include a Brazilian wax voucher, among other gievaways. Ms O’Connor promoted the concept on campus and with buckets that were sold at early home games.
Michelle Adams has focused more on the commercial and sponsorship side of the Turbos. Earlier this season she organised the “strip launch” evening as a charity event alongside the Downtown cinema complex and Colspec Construction. The event included a
fashion parade with the proceeds going to the Palmerston North Hospital’s children’s ward.
Former students who worked with the Turbos are also proving the experience is valuable.
Recent Massey sport management graduate Haylee Mutch, who was assistant event manager for the Turbos two years ago, is now
Sports management students helping union win
the sponsorship and marketing manager at Awapuni Racing.
Last year’s event manager with the team, Troy Thurston, has recently taken up a sponsorship and marketing manager role with Sport Manawatu focusing on the Jets Basketball and Young Heart Manawatu Football events.
Manawatu Turbos in training at the Palmerston North campus, where they are now based.
The recreational opportunities available to students and staff at the Palmerston North campus will be showcased at the “Have a Go Day”
this Saturday 20.
The event is run by Recreation Centre staff and is being held at the centre and the adjoining fields and courts.
Centre activities co-ordinator Gemma Lindegren says it will give current and prospective students and staff the opportunity to sample some of the activities on offer.
“There are a number of activities scheduled for the day that will give people a chance to see demonstrations from clubs, then have a go at the activities themselves,” Ms Lindegren says.
Clubs on display at Palmerston North campus
“Recreation Centre staff will also be showcasing what it has to offer in terms of gym facilities and other activities.”
The day begins at 10.30am and runs through to 3.30pm with a wide range of activities from drumming, rugby and juggling to Les Mills gym classes. Ms Lindegren says year-13 pupils from around the city have also been invited.
“We hope to show them what’s on offer besides academic study at Massey and help bridge the gap between high school and university so that first-year students start the new academic year with some familiar faces.”
Some of the Manawatu’s up-and-coming rock bands that have played in the Smokefree Rockquest this year will perform.
An investigation into whether kiwifruit in breakfast cereal could help women overcome iron deficiency has been given a $5000 grant by the New Horizon for Women Trust.
The author of a doctoral study, dietitian Kathryn Beck and her supervisor, Dr Cath Conlon, from the Institute of Food, Nutrition and Human Health in Auckland, received one of two research grants awarded by the trust this week.
Ms Beck says lack of iron is the world’s most common nutritional deficiency and young women are particularly at risk. “Iron deficiency can cause fatigue, decreased cognitive functioning and reduced work capacity,” she says.
The grant will enable her to more than double the number of participants in the survey, which
is partly funded by Zespri International.
Eighty-nine participants with mild iron deficiency are being provided with a four- month breakfast programme combining cereal with different fruits to assess the impact on iron levels.
The grant will enable Ms Beck to screen a further 150 women to take part in the study to identify those with low iron stores.
She says dietary intervention is the recommended first treatment for iron deficiency. This can include using iron rich foods or foods high in vitamin C – such as kiwifruit, which increase the absorption of iron.
The Wellington-based trust was launched in 1992 to provide grants for women to develop their academic and research potential.
Award for iron-boosting kiwifruit and cereal study