Mark Parfitt has been involved in outdoor education his whole life.
He grew up in Motueka and moved to Timaru when he was 11. He studied outdoor education at a polytechnic in Timaru, stayed in Taranaki for a year and then lived in Canada for two years. He joined Nayland College at the beginning of this year where he is part of the outdoor education team.
Mark has a real passion for kayaking. The two years he spent in Canada provided him with lots of amazing experiences that he will carry with him for the rest of his life. His favorite time kayaking was when he learnt how to do first descents by throwing himself off waterfalls.
Kayaking is the only pursuit in the outdoors that gives Mark an intense physical challenge and sense of satisfaction. He is most happy when he is on a scary piece of white water and loves the beautiful views that often surround him.
Mark’s role here is outdoor education support and he works with all the outdoor education classes. He doesn’t spend any time in the classroom, as he’s always out on the field. The classes often go rowing, sea kayaking and into the Abel Tasman.
So far Mark says he is thoroughly enjoying his time here at Naycol. “This first term has been a lot busier than expected. I love all the kayaking that’s going on, and I love getting to meet all the new outdoor ed students. I’ve definitely enjoyed it as a good new challenge,” he said.
Before working at Nayland, Mark was a guide. That was often very unpredictable, unlike his new role. Another plus is that he gets weekends free as well. In his spare time Mark also enjoys taking photographs, white water sports and hunting.
By Ella Norrie-Dempsey