Courtney Moir: Scholarship Opens up a New Life Under the Waves

Courtney Moir

The impressive results Courtney Moir has racked up in surf life saving and underwater hockey helped her score one of twenty Toi Ohomai Secondary School Achiever Awards when she started her New Zealand Diploma in Environmental Management (Marine) (Level 5) course this year.

Courtney (18) used most of the $2500 scholarship to pay for a diving course which marine students often take to complement their studies. She’s saving the rest of the money for a trip to Papua New Guinea that she’s planning to take as part of the level 6 diploma next year.

Courtney’s career options are wide open. She’s considering scientific diving, joining the police dive squad, being a fisheries officer, or heading overseas as a diving instructor.

Each role involves water, which is hardly surprising. Courtney has previously picked up several national team titles representing both Trident High School in underwater hockey and the Whakatāne Surf Life Saving Club in surf canoe events. Her family home, which she returns to each weekend, is across the road from the beach. 

The ocean also inspires her other passion - art. Courtney won the top Visual Arts Award in her final year at high school and her portfolio of acrylic paintings and drawings showing her connection with the ocean helped her gain a top NCEA result. 

Courtney’s working as a part-time swimming school instructor while she pursues her tertiary qualification, and will return to her voluntary role as an Inflatable Rescue Boat (IRB) instructor at the surf club during the upcoming summer season.

She’s loving the applied aspects of her Toi Ohomai diploma.

“The course is awesome! I really enjoy the practical side of it, how we’re always doing things connected with our studies. We’re not always in a classroom; we’re outside and they [the tutors] are showing us stuff,” she says.

“I’m also enjoying being under the waves, after all the time I’ve spent on top of them!”