Logistics Specialist Officer, Royal New Zealand Air Force
Bachelor of Business in Management & Human Resource Management and Employment Relations
He enjoyed coming to AUT as a mature student, says business alumnus Joel Wiapo who works for the Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF).
“The RNZAF has a study programme for career advancement, and I came to AUT through this programme. Studying at university at the age of 28, after already having work experience, was a fantastic learning experience for me. In my experience, AUT provided enough individual time with lecturers to assist with my learning.
“Throughout my Bachelor of Business, I was able to reflect on the amazing skills the RNZAF had taught me, learning the theory and then applying it to my experience in the RNZAF. This provided a rich learning environment, and I aim to carry learning from my degree back in to the RNZAF,” says Joel who received the award for the top Māori graduate and top Management major student from the AUT Business School.
A rewarding career
Since graduating with his Bachelor of Business, Joel has completed RNZAF officer training and now works as a logistics specialist officer.
“As a logistics officer, I’m responsible for the management of staff who are conducting various logistical roles. I love working with people from a mentoring and coaching aspect. Helping individuals get closer to their potential is satisfying. I also enjoy the daily tasks to ensure the planes have the parts they need to keep flying and support New Zealand’s security interests.”
He frequently draws on the skills he developed throughout his studies at AUT, Joel says.
“Many of the HR and management papers I completed provided understanding around what staff want in a good manager. Studying the management literature was an eye opener and also confirmed my own experience with good and poor managers. I strive to be a good manager by using many of my learnings from my studies.”
Advice for other students
Joel, who graduated from AUT at the end of 2018, has some great advice for other students.
“My advice for other students is to pick topics that interest you.
“Often a paper will have assignment or essay options. If none of these interest you, check with the lecturer if you can pick your own topic. Researching and writing about something that actually interests you makes a big difference.”