Empowering Maori and Pasifika engineering students at the University of Auckland for the third year

He waka eke noa (a waka we are all in together - we rise together, fall together, work together, keep going together). For the third year, Beca has renewed their partnership with the South Pacific Indigenous Engineering Students (SPIES) association at the University of Auckland.

On May 12, numerous people and leaders from throughout Beca joined SPIES Executive Team and their students to virtually celebrate the renewed partnership, while sharing some of success of the programme and what was planned for the year ahead.

Rupert Hodson, Beca’s Northern Regional Manager, said, “I’m proud to continue our partnership with SPIES. It’s a partnership that continues to strengthen and evolve to deliver mutually beneficial outcomes for everyone. From a personal perspective, I’ve really enjoyed the engagement with SPIES executives each year and the relationships I have developed through this experience.”

He adds, “I continue to be inspired by the positive impacts our mentoring relationships have delivered – it has been hugely successful. It helps SPIES students understand how they can prepare for the workforce, while providing leadership opportunities and cultural awareness for Beca employees as mentors.”

Ronaldo Posē, SPIES President and computer system engineering student, reflected on the partnership saying, “We’re moving into our third year of partnership and it has been a rewarding journey. Where Beca has provided industry knowledge and values, SPIES has reciprocated in sharing our culture and its fundamentals. The friendships that have formed outside of the professional partnership is what we have found most rewarding. We are always learning from each other, be it in our mentorship programme, or at our Annual Dinners or Cultural Insight events. It's only up from here!”

First established in 2018, the partnership between Beca and SPIES aims to promote Māori and Pasifika representation in the engineering profession, while supporting the students’ development and setting them up for a successful transition into their chosen organisation. The mutually beneficial partnership involves a range of initiatives including a joint mentoring programme, employment workshops and networking events with Beca graduates and senior leaders.


SPIES is a 200-strong student-led group from the University of Auckland that has been operating for 20 years. Their purpose is to support the academic, social and cultural hauora (well-being) of Māori and Pasifika engineering students.