Pasifika learner support

Te tautoko i ngā ākonga o Te Moana Nui a Kiwa

Pasifika learner support

Te tautoko i ngā ākonga o Te Moana Nui a Kiwa

Noa'ia, Mauri, Ni Sa Bula Vinaka, Fakaalofa lahi atu, Tālofa, Kia orana, Mālō e lelei, Mālō nī, Talofa lava, Tēnā koutou katoa and warm Pacific greetings to you all.


It’s natural to feel excitement and maybe a little bit of anxiety when you decide to study.  But think what can an extra qualification do for you and your family, whānau and  community. 

It opens doors, it opens opportunities and your journey acts as motivation to those around you especially when you finish.

Studying online might be something new for you, so it’s really important for us to let you know that support is available, whatever stage you are in your study journey with us.

Get help choosing the course that's right for you

Before you enrol, you're welcome to get in touch so we can chat about what you want to study.  Our Student Advisors can talk you through the requirements and expectations of different courses so you can choose the course that's right for you.  It’s an investment for you and your whānau, so let’s make sure you are ready.

If you prefer you can ask to talk to one of our Pasifika Advisors. Just ask when you get in touch.

  • 0508 650 200.

Meet Kilisi

“Start with what you’re capable of then see how that works for you. You can build on it one step at a time. It depends on your circumstances but I truly believe if you start small and dream big it will happen.”

Kilisi Palu, New Zealand Diploma in Early Childhood Education and Care (Level 5) graduate

Learn more

Getting started with online learning

Sometimes when you start something new or restart something you haven’t done for a long time, it’s helpful to get guidance from someone who understands any feelings of uncertainty that you might have.

Our Student Mentors can guide you through those first important weeks of your study. They can help you to log in and find your way around your online course, and  make sure you have what you need to get started.

They understand your commitments and obligations as a Pasifika person, including the need to be successful for yourself and your family.  If you prefer you can ask to speak to a Pasifika Mentor.

To help you get ready for learning check out the tips linked to below:

A dedicated team of Kaihāpai Pasifika mentors is available to assist during any part of your learning journey, from beginning to end.  

Our friendly Kaihāpai Pasifika mentors can help with any questions that are not course content or assessment related. They can give you advice or guidance about:

  • study skills
  • motivation and time-management
  • assessment extensions, including getting extra time if you need it (Special Consideration).

Feel very welcome to get in touch using link below or call and ask to be connected to a Kaihāpai Pasifika mentor.

Picture of our four kaihapai Pasifika team members.

 Left to right - Ondreyah Tupuivao-Fa’atui, Gemma Kerisiano, Joyita Maulolo and Ruthie Holmes.


Support while you study

If you can step off the street and come into study and write a thousand word report on your first day of the course, then you definitely have some academic super powers. But many of us need a little help to get going and make sure we're on the right track.

Our Student Mentors can help during your course if you have questions that are not course content or assessment related. They can give you advice or guidance about:

  • study skills
  • motivation and time-management
  • assessment extensions or Special Consideration.

When you start working in your course, the Course Leader will be on hand to guide you and help you understand the course materials, and answer any course or assignment questions you might have.

When the course starts they'll email you. Then once you've started they'll stay in touch through the talk channels in the online learning environment, iQualify.  Look out for their announcements in iQualify. 

With Open Polytechnic, you could just email or call and it felt like it was only me and the lecturer.

Emma Harris, Bachelor of Business (Accounting) graduate


Meet Arzhay

"Studying has changed my outlook on life and my career exponentially. Having the knowledge under my belt has given me that extra confidence I need."

Arzhay Heslop - New Zealand Certificate in Pharmacy (Pharmacy Technician) (Level 5) graduate

Learn more


Research and assignment support

When it comes to assignments, you will also have access to our Library and Learning Centre, who have their own unique kete of services. They can help you with research and academic writing, and give you study tips.

 Learn more about how the Library and Learning Centre can help you


Financial support

We offer a range of scholarships and awards for our learners, including our Pasifika Study Award. This award if for learners who are nearing the end of their qualification and have completed at least 120 credits towards their Level 5 or above qualification. We offer this award to acknowledge the contributions that our Pasifika learners will make to their families and the wider community through their academic achievements.  

 Mental health and wellbeing

Feeling troubled or anxious?

Talking with a counsellor may help. We have partnered with Puāwaitanga and Vitae to give all our ākonga access to free and confidential phone and online counselling services:

More on mental health support

The benefits of studying at the Open Polytechnic fall more on a personal level for me, feeling a sense of pride and achievement that I'd accomplished this on my own. I had a lot of support, but it ultimately came down to my hard work, determination and a lot of coffee. There was a great sense of pride when my children came to my graduation. I wanted to be an example for my children so they could see that if their Mum can get her degree, then they should be able to as well.

Tai Daniel-Teuhema, Bachelor of Business (Management) graduate


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