Category Archives: Student Success

Opportunities and advice for making the most of your time at UC, as well as stories featuring students who are excelling in their field.

Secret lives of killer whales explored

A series of recording devices will be deployed in Antarctica this summer to explore the secret lives of killer whales in an unprecedented monitoring programme.

University of Canterbury PhD student Alexa Hasselman is preparing for her first Antarctic field season with Gateway Antarctica this summer. In an expansion of Gateway Antarctica’s ongoing Antarctic top predator programme in the Ross Sea  the recording devices  will monitor the species for four-weeks,  24 hours a day.

As top predators, killer whales are sentinels for the Ross Sea ecosystem. More specifically, tracking their interactions with one commercially important prey species in particular, the toothfish, is critical to supporting the recently announced Ross Sea region Marine Protected Area (MPA) established under the auspices of CCAMLR.

Gateway Antarctica’s work is leading the effort to meet New Zealand’s commitment to study top predators such as killer whales under that agreement. Alexa’s work adds a key capability  says  field team leader Dr Regina Eisert,  who is Alexa’s supervisor at Gateway Antarctica.

“Establishing a passive acoustic monitoring network is a critical step in getting the data we need to effectively protect the Ross Sea.” 

The research team includes two acoustics experts, Dr Andrew Wright, also of Gateway Antarctica, and UC’s College of Engineering Associate Professor Dr Michael Hayes.

Alexa says the New Zealand-made devices will be recording the sounds made by killer whales, and other marine mammals, for several weeks at multiple locations.

“The recorded sounds give us the ability to study animals all day and night, even at times when we cannot be in the field. This will provide a comprehensive record of the various patterns of the whales’ movements, and explore whether Antarctic killer whales have a regular daily schedule.”

In addition to supporting the MPA, this information will direct other work by Gateway Antarctica, specifically the deployment of non-invasive satellite transmitters onto the whales.

The wider initiative, funded through United Nations Environment Programme and a Pew Marine Conservation Fellowship to Dr Eisert, aims to provide further information about the ecology of Antarctic killer whales and other top marine predators, and the connectivity between the Ross Sea and New Zealand.

Careers – are you guilty of narrow thinking?

You might be unaware of the huge range of opportunities that are available to you, says Chris Bridgman, Manager | Kaiwhakahaere of UC’s Careers, Internships and Employment Centre | Te Rōpū Rapuara. Might be time to pay a visit?

Chris says many students think in terms of quite a prescribed pathway.

Careers 2“But the world of work is changing rapidly, so we encourage students to be alert to these changes and to seek opportunities to enhance their employability.”

He says the Careers Kit – a series of 74 brochures on all the major subjects taught at UC – helps illustrate some of the wide range of real-world career options.

Matchmaking

The Centre also works hard on your behalf out in the ‘real world’.

“We’re continuously working with employers, so we have current information about industry developments and what employers are looking for in well-rounded employees. Skills and qualities in high
demand include communication skills, analytical and critical thinking, interpersonal and team skills, and a work ethic.”Careers 1

“We’re able to inform employers about how to attract young employees and what their expectations are.”

The Centre helps broker relationships with industry bodies and employer groups via numerous employer information sessions
and Careers Fairs throughout each year.

Are you work ready?

The Careers team also manages UC’s Co-Curricular Record (CCR) system, which is aligned to UC’s graduate attributes and formally recognises students’ extracurricular activities as evidence of their work readiness.

Although only in its second year, the CCR already features 40 different activities – ranging from Student Volunteer Army work to peer note-taking – and involves nearly 1,000 students.

Don’t wait until 3rd year to visit (but if you have, visit now!)

The Centre works hard to listen to the student voice and what they need and want.

“Increasingly we’re seeing students right throughout their studies, which is the key to making the most of their time at university in terms of career planning and development.”

The Centre also advises those returning for postgraduate study and assists recent graduates with finding jobs through the UC CareerHub, which lists job vacancies.

So contact Careers now…or a couple of days after exams.

For further information, go to:
www.canterbury.ac.nz/careers

International students – help us and win a Black Cat cruise

International students – we need your help, and you might win a Black Cat cruise!

We need a focus group of international students who enrolled for the first time at UC in Semester 1 or 2 this year (2017) to spend one-hour with us on Friday 27 October 12 noon to 1 pm to give us advice on the Guide to UC for international students.

We’ll provide lunch plus you have the opportunity to go into a draw to win a double pass to experience the Akaroa Harbour Nature 2011 AHNC composite 3a RGBCruise.

Thanks Black Cat Cruises!  #blackcatcruises
Check out their info and the photo gallery below.

Interested? Here’s what to do:

  1. Email us  by 5pm Tuesday 24 October at communications@canterbury.ac.nz with the subject heading: UC Guide.
  2. Tell us why you think you would be good at providing us with advice on the Guide to UC for international students.
  3. Provide us with your student identification number.

We will let you know if you have been selected to be a part of the focus group on Wednesday 25 October.

Check out these awesome photos and imagine yourself on a Black Cat cruise…

 

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