About Us

The NZAGE is the industry body educating, and supporting organisations that currently recruit or develop New Zealand graduates (including interns, scholarships and cadets) and those who wish to do so in the future. The NZAGE is supported by a broad range of organisations, including large and small employers across many industries in both the private and public sectors. The NZAGE also seeks to consult with related associations including careers advisory services; non profit bodies and entities which offer services in connection with graduate recruitment and development (I.e. suppliers).

The NZAGE is a Not-for-profit Incorporated Society. It does not receive government funding; rather its activities are entirely supported by funds raised by way of annual subscriptions, event fees and services provided to the graduate recruitment industry.

NZAGE supporting NZ employers

  • Relationship building - the NZAGE provides opportunities for networking with Professionals from the graduate recruitment industry, including employers, careers advisers and service providers.
  • Annual Summit – the NZAGE hosts an Annual Conference in October each year. Immediately following the NZAGE Summit is the NZAGE Industry Awards, which are open to members to submit applications on their graduate programmes. Please see the Awards tab for further information on this. 
  • Education / Information - the NZAGE facilitates both formal and informal opportunities to learn about the industry, share information and develop skills. The NZAGE operates its one annual independent NZAGE Candiate Survey and NZAGE Employer Survey in association with Highfliers Research (UK). The Employer Survey summarises a range of data provided by New Zealand employers in relation to their graduate recruitment activities. The Candidate Survey summarises attitudes and opinions from recently recruited candidates (i.e successful hires) with respect to various aspects of the graduate recruitment process. 
  • Advocacy and Support - the NZAGE communicates the views of the industry to other stakeholders in the graduate recruitment and wider youth recruitment market including tertiary bodies and government. The NZAGE also provides support and advice on industry 'best practice'.

The Association is led by a dedicated committee of volunteers who donate their time to help manage our member offering. All our committee volunteers have 'day jobs' as graduate recruitment leaders at one of the NZAGE's member organisations. We believe that this structure gives the NZAGE a unique ability to provide New Zealand graduates, our members and the wider industry with valuable and relevant services.

NZAGE Committee

Ashley Jones

Organisational Development Advisor, Beca Ltd

Ash leads the Graduate and Summer Intern Development Programmes across Beca, with a mission to develop and empower our young professionals to emerge as successful consultants in their technical field. She is driven and dedicated to the development and growth of graduates in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) careers, and is particularly passionate about integrating Beca’s diversity and inclusion philosophy and principals. She has been involved in a range of STEM initiatives including Engineering New Zealand’s Wonder Project, Wonder Week ,The Week of Engineering and partnering with The University of Auckland South Pacific Indigenous Engineering Students (SPIES) network. Ash joined the NZAGE Committee in 2019.

Mychelle Goddard

HR Manager, Russell McVeagh

Mychelle is an HR Manager at Russell McVeagh, supporting both legal and business services teams across the business, as well as managing the summer clerk, law clerk and scholarship programmes for the firm.  Mychelle has always wanted to be in HR and completed her Masters in Industrial and Organisational Psychology at the University of Canterbury to kick off her career. Mychelle spent four years at Russell McVeagh before heading to London where she expanded her HR skillset at EY and then Kilburn and Strode (a Patent and Trademark firm). She returned to Russell McVeagh in late 2017 and is passionate about the culture transformation the firm is undergoing. Mychelle was on the NZAGE Committee prior to heading over to London and rejoined on her return. 

Lacey Knight

Graduate Programmes Lead, Auckland Council

Lacey leads the attraction, selection and development of the Graduate, Intern and Cadet Programmes at Auckland Council. Annually she recruits on average, 50 Graduates and 50 interns across 30 different business units such as Engineering, Governance, HR and Regulatory Services. She has a personal goal to empower more Maori and Pasifika into careers that will develop them into our future leaders and specialists. Lacey’s background combines a career working as a HR generalist and high volume recruiter across 6 countries with her love of Learning and Development.  After working, living and travelling through multiple countries she has settled permanently in New Zealand and looks forward to continuing her own personal development journey with NZAGE.  Lacey joined the NZAGE Committee in 2019. 

Ainsley Burns

Lead of the GovTechTalent Graduate Programme, Department of Internal Affairs

In her role, Ainsley provides professional guidance and project management for the cross-agency ICT/Digital Graduate programme, GovTechTalent. Ainsley’s role is to increase the match of skills and future digital workforce requirements through managed intake and planned development of graduate across multiple government agencies. Ainsley has a background in adult learning, with a focus on leadership development. She leads an employee led network group called Authentic self which focuses on the wellbeing of the LGBTQI+ community,  and she convenes an early in careers community of practice across the public sector. Ainsley has a Communications degree with Honours, and is completing her Master’s degree. Ainsley joined the NZAGE committee in 2019. 

Poncho Rivera-Pavon

HR Consultant, Head of Graduate Recruitment, Simpson Grierson

Poncho leads the graduate programme at Simpson Grierson. Originally from Mexico City, Poncho worked at SKY and PwC where he was in charge of recruitment for their Advisory line of service. After moving to Auckland in 2012 he decided to focus his HR knowledge to help hospitality businesses grow. He has assisted with various openings of restaurants in New Zealand, such as Mexico and Burger Burger, while managing their HR departments. Poncho joined Simpson Grierson in November 2016 where he provides generalist HR support for the legal staff.

Niamh Coleman

Resourcing Consultant, Graduate Recruitment, KPMG New Zealand

Niamh leads KPMG New Zealand’s Graduate and Intern Programme, focusing on bringing future leaders and shining stars into the business. She has 4+ years professional experience, both in the UK and New Zealand and across both agency and in-house recruitment functions. Niamh’s worked in the FMCG and Telecommunication industries and is excited about her role in Professional Services with KPMG. She’s really passionate about equipping young people with the skills they need to build the workforce of the future and has been on the NZAGE Committee since February 2017.

Rachel Steward

Graduate Recruitment Specialist, Chapman Tripp

Rachel manages Chapman Tripp’s talent acquisition programmes – encompassing both experienced legal and support hires and full cycle graduate recruitment programmes (winter, summer and law clerkships). Rachel started her career in London with magic circle law firm Allen & Overy as part of their Graduate Recruitment team before moving to Auckland in 2014. Prior to joining Chapman Tripp, she spent two and a half years with KPMG, managing their graduate and intern recruitment campaigns across New Zealand. Rachel joined the NZAGE Committee in January 2016.

Jackie Hinchcliff

Project Manager, Business Management Systems & Processes, New Zealand Transport Agency

Jackie is an Investment Advisor at the NZ Transport Agency - the Planning & Investment (P & I) Auckland/Northland Regional Team and her work is best summarised as a “People/Communciations Advisor."  Her graduate work focus is the Planning & Investment Graduate Coordination, theGraduate Programme Coordinator and the One Agency Graduate Development Programme Project Manager. As part of the P & I Regional Senior Leadership team, her work is in the capacity of “Chief of Staff” where the focus is Team Engagement, Workforce Planning, Communications and Business Processing. A passionate volunteer, she is a also a board member of the Rotary Club of Auckland and and serves as its Youth Director.

Katie Pigou

NZAGE Administrator

The NZAGE Administrator is a part-time role, this individual looks after the day-to-day business of the Association including all enquiries, membership applications, communications, accounts and event management.

NZAGE Incorporated Society Board

Jacqui McKeown

Campus Recruitment Manager, EY

Jacqui McKeown is the Oceania Employer Branding Manager & NZ Campus Lead for EY, a global professional services organisation that provides a broad array of assurance, tax, transactions and advisory services.  Jacqui brings a wealth of experience across learning & development, recruitment, marketing and employer branding along with HR generalist skills. Jacqui has previously worked in the tourism, airline and security industries before moving into professional services. Jacqui enjoys playing a key part in the youth attraction and development space in New Zealand and joined the NZAGE Committee in 2015 and Board in 2017.

Siobhan Warren

Graduate Program Manager, Xero

Siobhan is a passionate graduate and scholarship program manager, based in Wellington. She has recently joined Xero, a New Zealand-based software company that develops cloud-based accounting software for small and medium-sized businesses. In this role, she will be developing the Xero graduate offering from end to end. Prior to joining Xero, she managed the graduate and scholarship programs for PwC New Zealand. Siobhan has degrees in Commerce (Entrepreneurship), Arts (Organisational Psychology) and holds a Masters in Management. Siobhan joined the NZAGE Committee in 2013 and Board in 2017.

Tim Watts

Director, TalentWire Group

Tim is the founding member of NZAGE, championing the establishment of the association in 2011 with the support of a group of passionate graduate employers. Prior to NZAGE Tim successfully coordinated NZ’s first graduate employer’s forum that focused on solely employer issues and the development of employer/ industry advancement and best practice. He is a director of TalentWire Group and is the co-founder of a number of successful brands - including tertiary careers website www.gradconnection.co.nz, secondary focused www.schoolconnect.co.nz and national publication Next Step. Tim has an extensive knowledge of the NZ graduate market place and area of youth career transitioning. He is passionate about youth development, and is a regular presenter on the topic. Outside of NZAGE and business Tim serves on the board of directors of Outward Bound Trust of New Zealand. He began his business career as a corporate tax accountant at PWC, he is an admitted Barrister and Solicitor and Chartered Accountant with a BCA (Accounting) and LLB from Victoria University of Wellington.