EIT Graduates Colour Their World
EIT’s graduation promises to be a particularly vibrant occasion this year with graduates launching the institute’s
new-look capping colours.
The 350 graduates who will take to the stage at Friday’s ceremony and parade through the streets of Hastings to
celebrate their achievements will be wearing the black gowns and caps that are traditional for graduations world-wide.
However, their deep hoods will be trimmed with new colour satins to more clearly identify the degrees with which they
will be conferred.
EIT has doubled the number of colours to encompass its widened range of diploma, degree and postgraduate qualifications,
and for the first time it is introducing bi-coloured hood trims for those graduating with concurrent degrees.
On the panel that chose the vibrant new colours, EIT Marketing Director Brenda Chapman says one criterion was that they
should reflect the areas of study and the types of students drawn to the various disciplines.
Also on the panel were EIT’s heads of school, fashion design programme coordinator Christina Rhodes and graduation
coordinator Diana Morris.
The undergraduate degree colours are pohutakawa for the Bachelor of Arts (Māori), fuchsia (Bachelor of Visual Arts and
Design), oceania (Bachelor of Computing Systems), paua (Bachelor of Business Studies), syrah ( Bachelor of Viticulture),
champagne (Bachelor of Wine Science), mandarin (Bachelor of Applied Social Sciences), kowhai for the Bachelor of
Teaching (Early Childhood Education), amethyst (Bachelor of Nursing) and ice (Bachelor of Recreation and Sport).
Hastings-based Soma President Ltd machinists sewed the satin linings into the hoods, and manager Harold Trigg says the
exercise provided a further linkage between the company and EIT. Fashion design study programmes include tours of the
factory and the business also provides students with holiday work.
“We were chuffed to get the job,” Mr Trigg says of the EIT commission.
The gowns worn by graduands (those about to graduate) and academic staff originate in the dress of medieval clergy. The
fashion for wearing them open at the front was prompted by a desire to show off fine garments underneath.
Worn in medieval times, the hood was embellished with the coloured lining a little later in history. The hood colours
have been strictly controlled since the 1600s to denote a graduate’s degree and the awarding institution.
Academic staff attending EIT’s graduation ceremony, to be staged as morning and afternoon sessions in the Hawke’s Bay
Opera House, will wear regalia trimmed with colours that apply for the educational institutions where they gained their