ITENZ Awards 2021

Congratulations to the 2021 ITENZ Awards winners!

Scroll down for photos and citations.

ITENZ Supreme Award Winner, 2021

  • Steve Hallett, Electrical Training Company (Etco)

ITENZ Provider of the Year Award Winner, 2021

  • Edvance

ITENZ Tutor of the Year Award Winner, 2021

  • Tony Burnham, Edvance

ITENZ Student of the Year Award Winner, 2021

  • Alize Hawkins, Pacific Coast Technical Institute

ITENZ Outstanding Performance Award Winner, 2021

  • Tania Fisken and Tanya Nunn, Electrical Training Company (Etco)

ITENZ Leadership Award Winner, 2021

  • Steve Hallett, Electrical Training Company (Etco)

Highly Commended

Tutor of the Year – Highly Commended

  • Arden Carter, Pacific Coast Technical Institute

Outstanding Performance – Highly Commended

  • Christine Ozich, Kalandra Education Group

Steve Hallett. Winner of the 2021 ITENZ Supreme Award and ITENZ Leadership Award.

The Edvance Team. Winners of the ITENZ Provider of the Year Award.

Tony Burnham. Winner of the ITENZ Tutor of the Year Award

Alize Hawkins. Winner of the ITENZ Student of the Year Award.

Tania Fisken (L) and Tanya Nunn (R). Joint winners of the ITENZ Outstanding Performance Award.

Christine Ozich. Highly Commended for Outstanding Performance

Award citations

Supreme Award – sponsored by Ako Aotearoa

The judging panel has conferred the Supreme Award in 2021 on the recipient of the 2021 Leadership Award, Steve Hallett

This award is made in recognition that the category winner has made an outstanding contribution to advancing the best possible outcomes for learners.

The role of the board is not always recognised in the running of a successful PTE but this nomination demonstrates that a visionary leader can transform an organisation and produce excellent results for the students that it serves.

Steve is a stand-out leader, he has taken Etco in a new and very successful strategic direction, built a cross-sector board with diverse skill sets, recognised that Etco needed to be innovative and flexible to take on what were at that time unknown changes, recruited a Chief Executive with specific strengths to grow Etco, provided strong effective leadership and governance, had the courage and vision to change the old guard, and in addition serves on the Auckland Master Electricians executive.

Under Steve’s direction, results have been increased revenue, increased apprentices, and award. His leadership has proved transformative for Etco. He leads collaborative processes, builds strong relationships, undertakes independent evaluation. Congratulations Steve on being a well-deserving recipient of the Ako Aotearoa Supreme Award, for 2021.

Student of the Year Award – sponsored by StudentCard

Alize Hawkins is awarded ITENZ Student of the Year Award.

Alize is from Te Whakatohea and Te Whanau Apanui and he is the youngest ever ITENZ Awards winner. 

He started at the Youth Arm of the Pacific Coast Technical Institute at the age of 14 coming from full immersion Māori schools with Māori as his first language.  It was soon clear to his tutors that he was talented and capable.  He overcame insurmountable obstacles against all odds and with sheer dedication, commitment, and grit he excelled in everything he attempted. 

Alize showed an extraordinary willingness to learn and succeed and has often been singled out by teachers as the student who is most excited, involved, and willing to learn in his practical application classes.  He was the recipient of the student of the year awards in 2019, 2020 at PCTI and is on track to receive it again this year. 

As his academic confidence grew Alize took on roles of responsibility supporting other students and staff to learn Te Reo and leading students and staff as head of the group when attending Marae. 

Alize’s story is great story of student success.

Tutor of the Year Award – sponsored by Tribal Group

Tony Burnham from Edvance is awarded Tutor of the Year.

‘Your ways of teaching are hard to come by and I am learning more now than I ever managed to learn at school’.  This is from a student whose programme shifted suddenly online due to COVID-19. 

Many student comments demonstrate Tony’s wide range of teaching strategies and techniques including, “I feel very lucky having Tony, he is very interactive, approachable, knowledgeable and he cares about our learning.  He made sure everyone was included and didn’t feel out of place.’  And “I learnt a lot of things and thought of things I would never have’.

Tony’s teaching and learning practices are respectful of cultures, inclusive of learning environments, build positive and authentic relationships, apply a needs-based approach to delivery, and use formative assessment to monitor what his students can do and what they need to build on.   

At Edvance, the Pacific achievement is higher than for non-Pacific.  Tony achieves excellent outcomes for Reading, Writing and Numeracy with significant shifts in abilities. Importantly, he is reflective of his teaching and learning approaches and there is strong evidence that demonstrates his response to feedback and improvements made. 

Outstanding Performance Award – sponsored by Wisenet

Tania Fiskin and Tanya Nunn  from the Electrical Training Company (Etco)

The two Ts, as they are known, share the role of Central North Island Region Administrator based in Rotorua. 

They are the perfect combination of two people job-sharing seamlessly, ‘never skipping a beat’ to ensure the smooth operation of the organisation.  “Any business would run like clockwork if you could ‘cut and paste Tania and Tanya into it” was one of the many supporting comments.

They are exceptionally efficient and dedicated, remarkably good at communication, are proactive, and constantly go above and beyond what is expected to support students and tutors – often working outside working hours this being the best times to make contact with their learners and apprentices. 

Their job is wide reaching and includes responsibility for all the administration for the region, keeping track of attendance and progress of 500 students, in charge of enrolment for all industry courses for registered electricians, and for reporting to the Electrical Workers Registration Board. 

At the heart of their work is the way they keep a close eye on all students, encouraging those that are falling behind and finding best possible ways to help them. Supporting evidence has come from within and outside Etco, including the Skills Organisation.

Provider of the Year Award – sponsored by Office Max


Edvance demonstrates excellent learner achievement, a focus on staff and their well-being, and a desire to impact the wider community.

A Māori or Pacific learner studying at Edvance is likely to achieve equally or better than non-Māori or non-Pacific people. Their Te Puni Kokiri cadetship programme in partnership with Auckland District Health Board aims to lift the number of Māori staff employed by ADHB. Another partnership, with Te Whangi trust, targets at-risk Māori youth to achieve life skills including communicating confidently, solving problems more effectively, planning for the future and their rights and responsibilities as employees.

Edvance tutors win Exceptional Adult Educator awards. They carry out voluntary “Days of Good”, like packing food parcels for needy Aucklanders. They sponsor the rescue helicopter and Coastguard.

Glowing client feedback reports staff getting everything they needed out of training by Edvance.

Today’s award is not a random result. Edvance has consistently reached high standards over 10 years with policies on strategic leadership and reflective practice to improve teaching and learning. This is a provider that is making a difference and contributing to improved graduate outcomes.

Leadership Award – sponsored by Public Trust

Steve Hallett from Electrical Training Company (Etco) is awarded the Leadership Award.

Quiet dignity, unflappable, passionate, knowledgeable, courageous, visionary, insightful, some words used to describe Etco’s board chair, Steve Hallett.

How does Steve promote excellence and innovation? First he knows you need the right people. In his words, “We look at the skills set matrix and, as people retire, we actively seek directors with skills that will provide the strengths we need to develop a strong board with a sound understanding of good governance.”

Steve has steered the Etco board through some bold decisions about ground-breaking changes. A Board member said “Steve was by far the leader in that process. He was looking at what Etco looks like in 10-20 years. He had the ability to foresee a different future.”

He also knows that innovation requires investment. Under his leadership Etco has invested in learning technologies and student management systems, which have contributed to and enabled growth.

One of Steve’s great strengths is his ability to build strong mutual relationships. Under Steve’s leadership Etco has partnered with polytechnics, schools, government bodies and industry groups to advance the work of training electricians and other apprentices. 

He is rightly judged Leader of the Year.