Senior New Migrant leader appointed

Professor Shaista Shameem

Massey University has appointed Professor Shaista Shameem to the newly created role of Director – New Migrants.

Assistant Vice-Chancellor Māori and Pasifika, Dr Selwyn Katene says the new role is essential to meet the needs of the changing demographics of Aotearoa New Zealand.

“People from a number of different ethnicities now make up our country, and as a university of the new New Zealand, we need to ensure we consider the needs of these communities,”

“This position will be integral to ensuring how Massey works effectively with new migrant constituents — especially in the Auckland region.

"Professor Shameem has strong academic law background both in New Zealand and internationally. She has worked with the United Nations on international human rights issues so she is fully equipped to lead," says Dr Katene.

Describing the position as both progressive and exciting, Professor Shameem says it shows Massey is looking to acquire new ways of thinking from new migrants.

“New Zealand attracts new migrants all the time, making the country more vibrant and cosmopolitan. New migrants often bring with them a wealth of knowledge and experiences.

“Massey University - especially because of the work that Distinguished Professor Paul Spoonley has completed - is streets ahead of any other institution in New Zealand to understand and address new migrant issues in a comprehensive way,” she says.

“I look forward to working with Massey colleagues to support and enhance the work the university has started, and to build on that excellent foundation.”

A key focus for the incoming director will be to connect with and investigate how Massey can help ease issues for new migrants to New Zealand,

“New migrants face enormous challenges when they go to any country to study, and New Zealand is no exception. Having been a new migrant myself, I know from first-hand experience the issues that are encountered.”

According to Statistics New Zealand, in June 2013 Auckland’s population grew by over 21,000 people, with 32 per cent of this growth coming from net migration into the region.

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