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Studying for your Master of Environment and Society (MEnvSoc) at the University of Waikato gives you the chance to build on the skills and knowledge you've already gained during your undergraduate degree. You'll learn how to critically analyse the various points of view relating to environmental challenges. You'll develop your understanding of these different perspectives, and learn how to use your insights to deal with those challenges.
During your MEnvSoc, you'll do a combination of studying essential papers and preparing a dissertation or thesis. You'll be able to complete up to 120 points worth of papers and either a 60-point dissertation or a 90-point thesis. Your dissertation or thesis will be based on your own research, and you'll choose a topic relating to environmental and societal inter-relationships.
You might also like to include some relevant papers from other areas, such as environmental science, law and management. Taking this approach to structuring your degree helps you strengthen the connection between understanding issues at a theoretical level and applying the theory in practice.
The Faculty's links with groups working in local government, education and the community provide a range of opportunities for students studying towards a MEnvSoc. You'll benefit from guest lectures, workshops and field trips that have had input from members of the community or professional contributors . The teaching staff themselves are active researchers with national or global reputations in their specialist areas. You'll have the chance to benefit from their knowledge and expertise. Working with the staff, you'll be able to take advantage of, and directly access, global research ideas and communities.
Once you've completed your MEnvSoc, you'll be able to choose a career path that uses your skills. You might be interested in moving into policy work, whether that be at the local, regional or national level. Perhaps instead you'd prefer to work with the Waitangi Tribunal or local iwis. The MEnvSoc's interdisciplinary environmental focus provides the skills and knowledge for graduates to be able to work in those areas.
Contact University of Waikato to find course entry requirements.
Billy Bodger, Master of Science (Earth Sciences)
Smaller class sizes, enthusiastic lecturers and field trips to exciting North Island locations has made Earth Sciences study at Waikato a top experience for student Billy Bodger.
Billy completed a BSc in Earth Sciences before beginning an MSc in 2013, with a focus on geology.
"The flexible BSc course structure and passionate lecturers have allowed for more one-on-one time with staff and more feedback on assignments. I believe I wouldn't be where I am today without that additional help," says Billy.
Some memorable field trips have included a six day excursion to the Hawke's Bay for a sedimentary geology paper and a trip to the GNS Science Wairakei Research Centre for a volcanic geochemistry paper.
"Both of these field trips and all the other practical activities and applied research I have undertaken at Waikato have given me a valuable insight into the tasks that I could expect to encounter in industry. I have no doubt that these experiences will give me a head-start career-wise."
A School of Science Masters Research Scholarship in late in 2013 helped kick-start Billy's masters study. Now undertaking research in volcanic geology and gold mineralisation, Billy has been fortunate to work with an international mining corporation and is now trained to use a range of Waikato's excellent laboratory facilities specific to his research.
"Being able to tailor my degree to suit my strengths and interests makes Waikato a top choice for study. Once you come to Waikato, the doors will open for you and the opportunities are endless."
Kaylee Bird, Bachelor of Management Studies/Bachelor of Laws (Management)
A passion for dancing has led to a Sir Edmund Hillary Scholarship for Kaylee Bird. The former Otumoetai College student is now in her second year of studying a conjoint Bachelor of Management Studies and a Bachelor of Laws.
She says one of the reasons she chose to study at Waikato was that it was the only university in New Zealand where she could continue both dance and academic studies.
Kaylee has been dancing since she was four years old and mainly trains in classical ballet and contemporary dance. In 2013, Kaylee was accepted into three dance schools in Australia; the prestigious Tanya Pearson Classical Coaching Academy where she spent a term in 2014 experiencing full-time dancing before returning to her studies, Queensland University of Technology Bachelor of Fine Arts (Dance Performance) and the Queensland Dance School of Excellence.
In 2013 she was awarded honours in both her Advanced 2 BBO Ballet and Contemporary exams, and she was nominated to compete in the 2012 NZ Young Performer of the Year Awards.
Waylon Kenning, Master of Electronic Commerce (Electronic Commerce)
Master of Electronic Commerce student Waylon Kenning likes to create “digital experiences that delight customers; by defining their interests and marrying them to technology”.
Originally from Taumarunui, he is now half-way through completing his MECom degree online, while continuing to work full-time as a product architect at Hexagon Safety & Infrastructure, a global IT firm in Wellington.
Since graduating from a Bachelor of Electronic Commerce in 2008, Waylon quickly found work as a business analyst, and his career has gone from strength to strength.
He now oversees a diverse team of developers, user experience designers and analysts at Hexagon, who are creating a new mobile app designed to help police officers do their jobs more easily by putting critical information at their fingertips. The goal is to reduce paperwork so that police officers can spend more time in the field investigating crimes.
Last year Waylon decided he wanted to “beef up” his academic credentials, be exposed to the latest ideas in e-commerce technologies, and gain an internationally-recognised master’s degree that offers a passport to working overseas.
“I thought about doing an MBA, but I really wanted a programme focused on how business and IT relate to each other, and the MECom really fits the bill in that respect. I also liked the fact that the Professional stream was taught completely online, because most professionals can’t quit their jobs for an entire year.”
Waylon says his favourite paper was ‘MCOM502 - Managing Virtual Teams’, as it helped him understand how to communicate better with members of his own development team at Hexagon; some of whom are based in India and the United States.
For the professional field internship paper, MSYS519, Waylon spent 10 weeks working on a variety of small research projects for Contact Energy, his former employer.
“The internship is really designed to kick-start your career in e-commerce and help solidify your knowledge base, which is great for people who are new to this field.”
“If you’re already working in e-commerce, it gives you permission to research a topic in-depth that you’ve been thinking about for some time, because you have to write a 10,000 word report at the end of it.”
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