Johann Go

Health, politics, and the big questions in life are of abiding interest to Johann Go of Lower Hutt. Johann is currently in the final months of a Bachelor of Health Sciences and a Bachelor of Arts-a conjoint degree focused on public health in which he is majoring in philosophy.

Johann’s interest in health and society has been active from the age of 12, when he joined St John New Zealand as a cadet. He has gone on to excel within the organisation, having been appointed a divisional manager at the age of 20. In addition to his university studies, Johann leads a St John youth division in Howick and Pakuranga, teaching children aged 6 to 18 in first aid, healthcare, communication and general life skills. He is also a volunteer ambulance officer for the organisation, providing both frontline response and medical coverage at events.

While at high school Johann founded a student community outreach group that visited local rest homes during lunch breaks and after school to provide companionship and support to elderly residents.

His academic interests include moral and political philosophy, distributive justice, population health ethics, public health policy and the social determinants of health. As an avid writer and blogger, Johann also freelances with the New Zealand Herald and Stuff news websites, often on topics relating to health, politics and morality.

After finishing his undergraduate studies, Johann intends to embark on an Honours degree in the arts and further postgraduate study as he prepares for a career in academia and research.

Charles Norton

Charlie Norton is currently in his Honours year of a Bachelor of Engineering specialising in engineering science, which he describes as one of the most widely applicable engineering disciplines. It has the ability to use optimisation algorithms, data analytics and computational techniques to create positive change. Putting this into practice, Charlie’s Honours research thesis is on the North Shore Hospital’s Radiology booking system, addressing ways to optimise its use and reduce waiting times.

Charlie comes from Nelson and has spent two summers on work placement with Nelson Pine Industries where he used Visual Basic, AutoCAD and programmable logical controller code to implement engineering solutions in a manufacturing environment. This year, he was a summer research scholar at the University of Auckland. His research topic was on optimising New Zealand electricity market flows, with particular emphasis on implementing renewables (such as wind generation) into existing models.

Last year Charlie received the Prime Minister’s Scholarship for Asia, and attended the National University of Singapore for one semester as part of the University of Auckland’s 360° Auckland Abroad exchange programme. He will attend the Global Youth Summit in Switzerland in July.

Studies aside, Charlie volunteers as Head of Operations for the P3 Foundation, New Zealand’s youth movement to end extreme poverty. He is also the past president of the Auckland students’ chapter of Engineers Without Borders. In that role he managed a team of 20 people to support development projects in the Pacific and educate future engineers on how their career choices have the potential to usher in social change.

Charlie is also a keen scuba diver and recently obtained his open-water diving licence.

Jessica Patterson

Helping the one in seven couples affected by infertility is the dream of Jessica Patterson of Pakuranga, Auckland. Jessica is currently in her third year of a Bachelor of Science, majoring in biomedical science.

Whether by researching infertility, developing new infertility treatments (and improving the success rates of existing ones), or by working directly with infertile couples in a clinical setting, Jessica looks forward to making a difference in her future career as an embryologist.

Reproductive science began to fascinate Jessica as she progressed through her Bachelor’s studies in biomedical science. This will lead on to Honours studies next year and in due course to postgraduate study, possibly a Masters in clinical embryology at the University of Oxford.

Jessica enjoys helping encourage others towards careers in the sciences, as a mentor with the University of Auckland’s Science Scholars programme and a judge at the Auckland Science Fair in 2015. She complements her studies with work as a laboratory assistant at the Repromed fertility clinic in Auckland.

Another important part of Jessica’s life is karate, which she began learning at the age of eight. Since then, she has progressed to achieve her Nidan (second degree) black belt, to compete at a national level, and become a fully accredited karate instructor with Go-Kan-Ryu Karate, where she teaches on a volunteer basis.