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The Staff Team

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Professor Sonia Mazey

Sonia Mazey is adjunct professor public policy at the University of Canterbury (UC) and former Pro-Vice Chancellor of the University’s College of Business and Law (2012–20). She is also former chair of the Universities New Zealand Vice Chancellors' Sub-Committee for University Student Pastoral Care (CUSPaC) and former member of the national steering group for New Zealand Universities Women in Leadership (NZUWiL).

From 1992 to 1999 she was politics Lecturer and Fellow of Churchill College at Cambridge University before moving to Oxford University where she was politics Lecturer and Fellow of Hertford College (1999–2002), then Fellow and full-time Senior Tutor of Keble College (2003–08), with overall responsibility for students’ personal wellbeing and academic success. She also held senior academic positions at Brunel University and North London Polytechnic (now London Metropolitan University).


Her research interests include European comparative politics, European integration and the European Union policy process and she has published extensively in these fields.  More recent publications on New Zealand's public policy include Sonia Mazey and Jeremy Richardson (eds), Policy-making under Pressure: Rethinking the Policy process in Aotearoa New Zealand (Canterbury University Press 2021).

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Bruce White
Assistant Principal

A chartered accountant and company director, Bruce has held senior management positions in both the public and private sectors.  Over the last 14 years, he has worked in tertiary education at the Universities of Canterbury and Waikato.  


At UC, was Manager of the College of Engineering (2008-2011) and Deputy Registrar

(2011-2019) before moving to Global Manager for Benchmarking and Reputation at Waikato University.


Outside of work, Bruce can generally be found working on the lifestyle block that he and his wife, Debra have called home for the last 20 years.

Ollie van der Pol
Operations Manager

Ollie has a background in property, having spent several years managing shopping centres in central Christchurch, including the Re:START Container Mall and The Crossing.

She studied at Lincoln University, graduating with a Bachelor of Commerce (Valuation and Property Management). 


Ollie commenced at Arcady early 2020 and oversees the facilities, buildings, health and safety and summer conferencing. She’s the go-to person if anything needs fixing or isn’t up to standard – and she’ll get it sorted!


Any spare time is spent outdoors – running, adventure racing and mountain biking in Queenstown with her Bearded Collie.
Interestingly, Ollie has had a couple of boxing fights – a great stress relief.

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Samantha Cording
Community and Development Manager

Sam has a background in pastoral care and event management, having spent many years working in the University Accommodation sector. Sam studied at University of Canterbury (UC) graduating with a Bachelor of Arts (Sociology and Anthropology).

Sam is passionate about supporting the Arcady Residents through their first year of study. She began working at Arcady halfway through 2022. She facilitates the Arcady Events with the help of the RA team. Part of her role is to meet with students and support their pastoral care needs.

In Sam's spare time she plays Volleyball and ultimate frisbee. 

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Rachel Curtis
Communications and Office Coordinator

Rachel has a background in the education and customer services sector, being a qualified TEFL teacher and having worked in various roles internationally including the UK, USA and New Zealand. 

Rachel completed a Bachelor of Laws with Honours degree (LLB) in the UK and worked in the financial services sector before re-training as an ESL teacher. Rachel has spent time completing Sign Language qualifications and also learning Japanese.

Outside of work, Rachel is an avid hiker and regularly spends the weekends hiking tracks around the South Island!

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Scott Townsend
Head Chef

Scott has worked in some of the UK’s top kitchens and restaurants including Michelin regime restaurants and hotels. Scott has taken on several high-profile roles in Christchurch kitchens including; Sous Chef at The George Luxury Hotel and Head Chef at The Carlton in 2015.

Scott leads the kitchen team at Arcady Hall to produce hearty and nutritional food with a simplistic and fresh approach. He believes that dining is a social and happy time that brings people together and should be an experience, no matter the occasion.

Scott is originally from the UK and moved to New Zealand 9 years ago. In his spare time you can find him at the gym or outdoors hiking and fishing.


Kitchen Staff

Head Chef

Scott Townsend

Sous Chef

Sapi W Don


Bernadette Chan Kau

Dining Room Assistant

Denver Jamieson

Hillary Harris

Catering Assistant


Kitchen Hands

Imogen Barnes

Emmalee Abbott Joe

Ciaran Mee

Alex Taylor

Zoe Penny

Summer Jubb

Jamie Boyd

Stella Leong

Phoebe Peacock

Matthew Axtell

Kristen Ong 

Aiden Davies 

Head House Mum

Margaret heads up the household staff who clean, scrub and wash in the four residential buildings and keep their “eyes and ears” out for any issues relating to students, maintenance and guests.


Margaret has worked at Arcady Hall for over 15 years and helps promote the home away from home ethos we have at Arcady. She also hosts international students in her own home.


House Mum Team:

Dionne Kilkenny

Sonya Holland

Nadeeka Wijesundara

Linda Cheung

Kanchana Attapatu

Sabine Volker

Karl Krauze

Karl is our caretaker, handyman, gardener and "general fixit man” who is responsible for keeping the services running and the grounds looking beautiful. He ensures all repairs and maintenance are carried out in conjunction with Ollie our Operations Manager.

Margaret Gainsford
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