What is the Foundation?
The Foundation was established:
- To promote and support the general educational purposes and activities of Ara (Ara Institute of Canterbury)
- To improve the educational facilities of Ara
- To provide financial assistance (including the provision of scholarships and bursaries) to students of Ara on such conditions (if any) as they deem appropriate
- To support student educational activities of Ara
- To support staff education and development projects of Ara
- To support innovative educational projects undertaken by staff of Ara
- To support any other educational or charitable enterprise.
Who Established the Foundation?
The concept of a Foundation to support staff and students of the Ara Institute of Canterbury was first mooted in 1983 and in August 1984 the Polytechnic Council passed the required resolution to establish the Foundation as a charitable trust. In its first year of operation it received donations from Jean Herbison, Ian Hall, Peter Mills, Department of Building & Construction, P Downing, Armstrong & Springhall, Baron Computers, and Archdiocese of Wellington. In the ensuing years the Foundation received interest on its invested capital, donations and the net proceeds from the Polytechnic’s summer schools. In 1989 the Foundation secured a UHF Broadcasting license from the NZBC and later donated this to the CPIT School of Broadcasting. In the same year the Foundation invested $90,000 in the establishment of an International Language School. Its increased income enabled the trust to assist staff, and very rarely students, and it provided loans to help launch the Media Studies Department, Child Care Centre and International Teacher exchanges.
In the early 1990’s the Foundation’s funding activities ceased pending a major review of its future direction. In 1993 the Foundation agreed to sell the Language School to the Polytechnic. Around this time the Allen Street building, which was purchased in 1988 was renovated and leased back to the Polytechnic.
In the same year the Foundation’s modus operandi and constitution were reviewed and a new constitution took effect in November 1993. Several new initiatives emerged at this time: post-Polytechnic scholarship, job exchange scheme, post-graduate study awards for staff and a business development award for students.
In 1994 the Foundation appointed a part time secretary and appointed Spicers to invest and manage a portion of its capital funds. The Dame Jean Herbison Prestigious Award was also created in 1994 to recognize her contribution to tertiary education in Christchurch and specifically to the establishment of the CPIT Foundation.
Dr Joe Dobinson of the Computer Science Department became the first recipient for his research into multi-media uses across a wide range of disciplines.
A further innovation was the establishment of the Colin Russell lecture series to bring leading experts to share their insights with staff, students and the wider community.
Since its modest beginnings in 1984 the Foundation has grown its capital base and has awarded grants of over $2 million.
The Trust Deed was amended in 1999 to clarify the matter of its structure in terms of trustee numbers and appointment processes.
How is the Foundation governed?
The Foundation is governed by a Board of between 8 and 12 trustees appointed as below:
3 trustees appointed by the Ara Council and the Chair of the Ara Council (ex officio) – the Council’s current policy is to appoint the CEO and two other Council members to the Board
Up to 8 persons from the general community
View the current trustees.
Who can apply for a funding grant?
Staff and students at Ara are eligible to apply for a grant. As long as the application meets the criteria then it will be considered.
Apply for a grant.
What is the process for applying for a grant?
Application forms and criteria can be found on our Ara Grants page.
Applications under $10,000 are considered by trustees throughout the year.
Applications for grants over $10,000 must be received by the Foundation by October 30 each year. Applications will be considered at the November Foundation meeting and grants paid out the following year.