Gail Harrison

Award for Sustained Excellence in Tertiary Teaching

Manager and Lead Educator, Whanganui Learning Centre

"My teaching approach is to forge academic knowledge into tools for successful living (rather than merely facilitating good grades)." 

Gail has spent a significant part of her life enabling many people in the community with low or no educational qualifications to become learning facilitators and community leaders themselves.  With literacy and numeracy education as her specialist field she has achieved outstanding results for often fragile students.  Gail is a highly influential leader in Adult and Community Education and she applies a strength-based approach to her work providing a positive and non-judgemental regard for all students irrespective of background and ability.  Her primary focus is to address inequality of education provision for indigenous peoples and low income groups.

Gail has inspired a whole community.  Students and colleagues attest to her extraordinary ability to value and affirm students, sometimes for the first time in their lives.  A student writes, “You have showed me the way to become a strong woman and taught me that I can succeed in life, pushing me to be confident and go the extra mile in learning.”

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Gail Harrison - Recipient of a 2017 Ako Aotearoa Tertiary Teaching Excellence Award