Filoi Genevieve Togiaso

Te Whatu Kairangi Award | Le Moana Mua

Powerful educator and leader of Pacific learners

Filoi Genevieve Togiaso is Head of Department for Health Practice | Ara Institute of Canterbury | Te Pūkenga.

Genevieve exemplifies phenomenal educator praxis. Her reflective teaching methods indicate a sound understanding of Pacific cultures and how to make Pacific learners feel confident to be their authentic cultural selves in a learning institution. Being able to educate with Pacific-centric methods enables Pacific learners to know themselves and their learning contexts, giving them licence to bring their culture to their learning space.

Genevieve uses the ‘lived-in experiences’ of her Pacific learners through storytelling to encourage them to create trust and empathy, key values that are fundamental in a successful educator and learner partnership. She skilfully connects theory to real life experiences in engaging and powerful ways. She draws on her own nursing experiences to inspire hope and courage in Pacific ākonga.

Her teaching practice reflects the habits identified of a phenomenal educator for Pacific learners. She involves ‘solid evidence of systemic change’, which speaks directly to Habit 10 of the Phenomenal Educator Framework - to deconstruct and emancipate learner experience. All this is underpinned by 30 years of practical health experience and qualifications in both health and community leadership. Her knowledge and experience in clinical and organisational development, leadership, and governance is also extensive.

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[The criteria for the Le Moana Mua Award are based on Chu-Fuluifaga and Ikiua-Pasi’s (2021) research on phenomenal educators for Pacific learners.]

[Chu-Fuluifaga, C., & Ikiua-Pasi, J. (2021). From good to great: The 10 habits of phenomenal educators for Pacific learners in New Zealand tertiary education. Ako Aotearoa. Available from]

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Filoi Genevieve Togiaso - Recipient of a 2023 Te Whatu Kairangi Award | Le Moana Mua