Improving student success through engagement opportunities at Massey University Student Association (MUSA)

Ms Kerry Howe1, Ms Gunhild Litwin2

1MUSA, 2.22b Student Services Building, Massey Manawatu, 4410, , , , 2MUSA, 2.25 Student Services Building, Massey Manawatu, 4410, 

This presentation will describe and analyse the re-building of student engagement with MUSA initiatives and the flow-on effect on personal and professional success. We will discuss the underlying philosophy of emancipating students to find their voice in a climate of users-pay education and the role student associations play in developing an ethics of civics in students. Though only two years in the making, the authors will tell stories of how the re-building of a de-funded student association has invigorated vibrancy on campus, increased the number of volunteers to the student association (MUSA), increased the functionality of clubs and their executives, enabled a better functioning class representative system, and improved personal and professional growth for students. Particularly, the authors will describe and analyse issues that are enabling progress for this process, such as the development of a volunteer system, and the refining of the definition of volunteer for different aspects of student life such as class representation, clubs’ systems and volunteering for the student association. We will report on successful collaborative initiatives within the university as well as on ways of overcoming obstacles. Lastly, we will share success stories of students who have benefited from active participation in the MUSA volunteer system.


Kerry is a registered social worker who passionately believes in engaging students through offering volunteering positions.

Gunhild used to be a languages and art teacher and is a passionate organiser of events and people.

Together, they combine their strengths to create opportunities for students to find their voice as well as enable and support them to speak up for themselves and their fellow students.


The Australian and New Zealand Student Services Association Inc. (ANZSSA) is a professional association for people with an interest in the role of support services in post secondary education.

For more information, please visit ANZSSA website by


ISANA International Education Association is the representative body for professionals in Australia and New Zealand who work in international student services, advocacy, teaching and policy development in international education.

For more information, please visit the ISANA website at

Conference Managers

Please contact the team at Conference Design with any questions regarding the conference.