Defence and Massey join forces in the Manawatu

16 March 2011

The New Zealand Defence Force is locating its Training and Education Directorate at Massey University’s Manawatu campus Hokowhitu site.

Chief of the Defence Force Lieutenant General Rhys Jones and University Vice-Chancellor Steve Maharey say the agreement is part of an overall strategic partnership being developed between their two organisations. Envisaged are conjoint teaching programmes, research, personnel exchanges, sharing facilities and intellectual property, and jointly hosted conferences and seminars.

The Defence Force will be using the Hokowhitu campus as the base for its Training and Education Directorate and to deliver classroom-based learning to Navy, Army and Air Force personnel. About 42 Training and Education Directorate staff, both military and civilian, will be moving into Hokowhitu’s Awanui building by mid-May, with numbers increasing over the next two years.

“We’re delighted to have the Defence Force on the campus,” Mr Maharey says. “We have already developed a long-term, mutually beneficial relationship and their training and education role is an excellent fit with Massey.”

Lt Gen Rhys Jones says, “The Defence Force is very pleased to be further developing our relationship with Massey and building on this with co-sponsorship and development of the Centre for Defence and Security Studies.

“Palmerston North and the Hokowhitu campus are ideal locations for headquartering our training and education functions as they are central to our camps and bases in the lower North Island, and Hokowhitu provides us with purpose-built lecture theatres and tutorial facilities.”

Former Chief of Defence Force and Governor-General Designate Lieutenant General Jerry Mateparae (Rtd) was instrumental in the development of the relationship, along with Professor Glyn Harper, who heads Massey’s Centre for Defence and Security Studies.

Colonel Al McCone, the Defence Force’s Director of Training and Education says, “Massey also provides distance education at a tertiary level which is a significant drawcard for military personnel who work full-time during their study, and can be posted or deployed at short notice.”

Assistant Vice-Chancellor and University Registrar Stuart Morriss says this is a very positive development for Hokowhitu.

“It’s a tremendous opportunity to co-locate partners in the provision of professional education on the site and it adds to the variety of compatible organisations working there that are involved in education, to include the University’s College of Education, the Centre for Educational Development, the Centre for Professional and Continuing Education, and, now, the New Zealand Defence Force,” he says.

The Defence Force will be leasing four floors of the Awanui Building for 10 years.


For further information please contact: Defence Communications Group, Zen Gregor, 021 840 358 or

Massey Communications Director, James Gardiner 06-350-5255 or 021-275-3394

This page was last reviewed on 18 March 2011.