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Whanganui locals recognised with UCOL Honours Awards

By UCOL on Tuesday, 11 October 2022

Andrea Bullock receiving a UCOL Honours Award

Two Whanganui locals have received UCOL Honours Award for their contributions to education, business, and the community.

The UCOL Honours Awards celebrate people who have made outstanding contributions to the community, UCOL, and society. UCOL has presented the awards annually since 2011. 

Leading New Zealand hairdressing educator Andrea Bullock received the Honorary Fellowship – UCOL's highest award, while GDM Retail Systems Managing Director Michael Eden received the Honorary Associate award. 

Andrea Bullock's career in hairdressing education spanned over 40 years and began with her managing the apprentice classes at the Senior Technical Division of Wanganui Boys' College. Bullock later moved onto Wanganui Regional Community College and continued working there as it transitioned into Wanganui Regional Community Polytechnic and later UCOL Whanganui. 

Bullock served as chairperson of the HITO (Hairdressing Industry Training Organisation) Qualifications Advisory Committee from 1994 to 2012. In this role, Bullock was responsible for developing of all New Zealand's hairdressing qualifications, from trade to management. 

"Andrea's work has helped shape the futures hairdressers across the country from her teaching to her developing programmes, to her serving as an examiner on the New Zealand Trade Certificate Board for 27 years. She even taught Advanced Trade Certificate theory out of her own home at no cost, so that hairdressers could grow their skills and progress in their careers," says UCOL Board Chair Verne Atmore. 


Michael Eden founded GDM Group, a specialist designer, manufacturer and exporter of retail systems, in 1978. The group of New Zealand and Australian companies remain privately owned, and Michael leads a management team and staff of 60 at the Whanganui Head office and factory. The company also has joint ventures and strong relationships with manufacturing facilities in China. 

Verne Atmore says Eden has been a great leader in the shop-fitting industry and a champion for economic growth in Whanganui. 

"On top of managing GDM, Michael is a long-term executive member and current President of the New Zealand Retail Interior Association, sits on the Lead Team for Accelerate25, and helped establish Whanganui Lean Group to assist businesses to operate more efficiently. He is also a valued supporter of UCOL, as he has given students access to GDM's design studio and SolidWorks CAD software to help develop their skills."


Images: Andrea Bullock and Michael Eden receving their awrds from UCOL Board Chair Verne Atmore.

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