Making the move from across the ditch – Matt Holdgate has joined St Paul’s as the new housemaster of Williams House, taking over from Craig Hardman.
Originally from Warkworth, Matt lived in Sydney for the past six years working at Newington College as the head of outdoor education and a resident boarding master.
“I wanted to move back to New Zealand to be closer to family and friends. I was familiar with St Paul’s from my time living in Hamilton, and had always heard good things about the school, particularly its strong tight-knit community – which I was keen to be part of.”
Matt completed a Bachelor of Sport and Leisure Studies and Postgraduate Diploma in Teaching at the University of Waikato.
After several years teaching in New Zealand, including at Te Awamutu College, Westlake Boys High School and Saint Kentigern College, he went abroad to play rugby in the UK. Injuries however cut his time there short, so he relocated to Sydney taking up the role at Newington College.
During this time, Matt completed a Master of Educational Leadership (University of Sydney) and Graduate Diploma in Positive Education (University of Melbourne).
With a keen interest in positive education, he is now studying by distance towards a Master of Applied Positive Psychology and Counselling, through the University of East London – one of the only universities in the world to offer this qualification. “Positive education is a real area of interest for me and it ties in really well with pastoral care and my role as housemaster.”
As well as being Williams Housemaster, Matt will teach classes in social studies and physical education.
Teaching aside, Matt has been involved in coaching both rugby and cricket and was the coach of the New South Wales under-15 cricket academy team. He is now the coach of the St Paul’s under-65kg rugby team. Outside of work, he enjoys the outdoors, fishing and adventure sports such as snowboarding and water skiing.