SVA Fruit Picking

Do you need summer work? Are you interested in Fruit Picking? Read on to hear about this awesome opportunity that the Student Volunteer Army is working on for students over this challenging period:

This year the Student Volunteer Army has been creating opportunities for students to help our communities during the COVID-19 pandemic. With our borders closed, being able to travel in and out of New Zealand is extremely difficult. This is making it extremely hard for orchards across the country to have enough staff to complete their summer harvest. They do not have the number of international staff they would usually have to complete the harvest and we want to help solve this problem we currently have here in Aotearoa New Zealand.

The other side of that is you. Maybe you have had to change your summer plans of possibly going home or visiting friends and whānau or maybe even taking a holiday somewhere abroad. SVA wants to help solve this problem and give you an opportunity to have a unique experience while earning some hard-earned pay in some of the most beautiful parts of Aotearoa.

Our plan is to provide 30  students with an opportunity to travel down to Central Otago (Roxburgh) and work for a local fruit orchard picking fruit. (Note that this will involve long hours of physical work and moving up and down ladders in the heat.)

Come with a group of friends as this opportunity will be for 4-6 weeks and accommodation will be arranged. We are also working out an appropriate flat rate for your time.

If needed, we can help provide transport to and from Central Otago, and also provide you with a list of gear you will need.

If you are interested and would like to be part of the solution, please fill out the expression of interest form and we will be in touch – be sure to let us know exactly what you need to make this happen and we will do our best to support you.

Expression of Interest – SVA Fruit picking

We welcome feedback and ideas, so if you need any other support you can email us at or give SVA a call on 0800 005 902.

Peddling through a department’s history

Last month the team from the Canterbury College Collections Survey project visited the UC Forestry Department and discovered a bicycle with over 100 years of history. Its traceable record begins at Cass Field Station, which has been a research centre for the University since 1914 and is the oldest field station in New Zealand.

A photograph, taken at the station by Mr Charles Foweraker around 1914-15, identifies this very bicycle in the foreground. We can imagine that the bicycle was a useful addition to the station for students and researchers exploring the local area.

The bicycle can be seen leaning against the first building at Cass Field Station

Foweraker was likely one who benefited from the use of the bicycle, as he spent many years taking students to Cass and carrying out research in the surrounding area. Having studied Botany at Canterbury before WWI, Foweraker returned from the War and became New Zealand’s first university lecturer in Forestry in 1921. Other artefacts that have now been surveyed in the Forestry Department include two microscopes that Foweraker built as a student of Botany and continued to use for years afterwards.

Mr Charles Foweraker

To commemorate his significant work around Cass and the surrounding area, Foweraker’s name has since been given to a prominent mountain in Arthur’s Pass National Park, which can be seen from the field station in Cass.

It is not known how long the bicycle at Cass remained in use, but it was rescued from the Cass dump site in the 1980s and brought back to Ilam campus where it was stored in the basement of the Von Haast building. In 2014 the Forestry Department gave the bicycle a new seat and fresh tyres and proudly displayed it as a symbol of the department’s valuable history for their 100th anniversary.

Artefacts continue to appear in interesting and unexpected places. The survey team are looking forward to exploring more history at some of the University’s remote field stations over the coming weeks. As always, please contact us if you would like to provide any information about heritage artefacts from around the University that may be of interest to the project.

Images supplied by the University of Canterbury School of Forestry

Amy Boswell-Hore, collection technician

Natalie Looyer, collection technician

Summer Academic Skills Workshops

Don’t wait – use the summer break to ensure you have the skills needed to succeed in 2021. Check out the free ASC summer workshops and enrol online now!

Where Canterbury students share their experiences.

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