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Auckland Staff

Mike Clayton – Supervisory Tutor/Course Leader Diploma in Sport Management & Exercise Prescription

Mike has been involved in tertiary education since 1999 in the United Kingdom, before arriving in New Zealand in 2006. He studied at Liverpool University before completing his Postgraduate qualifications at the University of Chester and University of Greenwich. Mike has a wealth of experience in Assessment & Moderation, as well as Lesson Observations. Mike has worked for Ed Excel & OCR Examining Boards as an examiner in Sport & Physical Education. Alongside his educational responsibilities, Mike has organized team tours for cricket, soccer and skiing throughout Europe, including Belgium, Italy and the United States. Mike’s interests include keeping fit, travelling & reading autobiographies.

Specialist Areas: Sport Psychology, Contemporary Issues in Sport, History of Sport and Cricket coaching.

  • Bachelor of Science (Hons) (Sports Science & Biological Science)
  • Post Graduate Certificate in Education
  • Post Graduate Diploma in Sport & Exercise Psychology

Viggo Rassmussen – Tutor Sport & Recreation

Staff Update - ViggoViggo brings a wealth of experience and expertise to our Auckland Team. He is a former Graduate student completing the Diploma in Sport Management and Exercise Prescription and Advanced Diploma in Exercise Prescription, both endorsed with Distinction.

He plays an active role in the Rugby League Communities and has represented Samoa at International levels on several occasions.

Other passions include Personal Training and healthy living, which he uses to empowering both Children and Adults.

Specialist Areas: Rugby League, Rugby Union, Cricket & Personal Training

  • Diploma in Sport Management and Exercise Prescription Level 5 (Distinction) NZIS
  • Advanced Diploma in Exercise Prescription Level 6 (Distinction) NZIS

Romina Villamonte – Course Leader Advanced Exercise Prescription  

Since 2015, Romina has brought her coaching skills and skills in Exercise Science to the Institute and is a part of the NZIS team as Course Leader in Advanced Exercise Prescription.

Romina has completed a Bachelors (with honours) and graduated Magna Cum Laude in Exercise and Sports Science with a minor in coaching. After that, Romina did a PhD in Exercise Physiology. In 2011, Romina moved to New Zealand to complete a Master degree in Science and has been working as a teacher in tertiary education, researcher and has been a part of the Human performance clinic in the department of Sports and Exercise Science.

Romina enjoys traveling the world and learning about their cultures. She also enjoys paddleboarding, kayaking, swimming, cycling and the outdoors in general.

Specialist Areas: Exercise Physiology, Sport and Exercise Science, Coaching.

  • Bachelors (with honours) in Exercise and Sport Sciences
  • PhD in Exercise Physiology
  • Masters in Science

Matthew Fiso – Tutor and Administration Support Manukau

Matthew joined the Auckland staff after attaining an Advanced Diploma in Sport Management, as well as a Certificate in Sport Management and Exercise Prescription from the NZIS Wellington campus. He is applying his skills currently as a tutor and in administration support.

Matthew is an active canoe polo player, and has represented the NZ Men’s Squad in 2011 and 2013. He has also represented NZ in the Canoe Polo NZu21 in 2009, where he won an Oceania Gold medal. Matthew provides great fortune and expertise through his athletic background as well as his academic background.


  • NZIS Advanced Diploma in Sport Management
  • NZIS Certificate in Sports Management and Exercise Prescription

Willie Toelau – Marketing Liaison

Willie has been with NZIS / NZCM since 2014 and is the Student Recruitment and Schools Liaison for the Central North Island to Kaitaia. After 15 years of working with reputable organisations (ITO, ATTO, Tools4Work), Willie provides great wealth and experience in recruiting for both NZIS and NZCM . He has developed exposure working with schools and community throughout the country. Willie’s experience in Gateway and STAR will help advance growth for NZCM, while creating awareness and career opportunities within our sector.

Willie’s strong background in sport, coaching and refereeing displays his hard work ethic and determination to get where he is today. His experience allows him to relate to the student’s success and his commitment to watching them grow in their own independence. Willie strongly believes our students and particularly Maori and Pacific students can achieve academic studies if they put their faith in their own ability, and have the courage to take on any challenge they face day to day.

Specialist Areas: Rugby (Rugby League for Richmond Rovers Bulldogs, Manukau Rovers Magpies, Hibiscus Coast Raiders, Ponsonby Ponies, Otara Scorpions), Coaching (Auckland Rugby League), Referee Coach & Assessor (Auckland Rugby League Referees Association, Referees Director for NZTFI Tag, Executive member on Toa Samoa Rugby League NZ, Training & Development officer for Otara Scorpions Rugby League).

Andrea Soric - Site Administrator

Site Administrator for the Auckland – Greenlane campus. She started working for the New Zealand Institute of Sport in January 2015. Her background is in creative arts. She has a Bachelor of Health Science from AUT, specializing in Human Resource Management and Psychology.


  • AUT – Bachelor of Health Sciences
  • Unitec – Certificate in Animal Management and Canine Behaviour and Training
  • Unitec – Certificate in Visual Arts and Photography

Harold So’e - Tutor

Harold joins NZIS Auckland after work career from BEST Pacific Training and 9 plus years at Manurewa High school. This off the back ground in High complex needs for youth at risk for CYFS and setting up the first Alternative Education Provider in New Zealand as well as 8 plus years at Papapkura High school.On top of this 20 plus years in education and working along side young peoples aspiration. A dedicated husband and father to eight children from South Auckland with a record of sporting success followed by an extensive rugby coaching background.

Under graduate Education Psychology
Under graduate Bachelor social work.

"A real privilege to be working alongside a high reputable school in the industry of sports to meeting the dreams and aspirations for our future sports men and women"

Alex Pratap - Personal Training Tutor

Alex joined the Auckland staff after completing a Bachelor’s of Sport and Recreation degree in Physical Education and a Graduate Diploma in Secondary Teaching. He completed a level 6 personal training diploma at the Auckland University of Technology. He has worked as a personal trainer for 3 and half years where he specialised in group fitness and boxing. He is applying his skills as a level 3 personal training tutor.

Alex is an active football player, and has represented New Zealand at the under 15 and 17 levels. Alex provides a holistic approach to personal training with his academic background and experience as a personal trainer.


  • Bachelor of Sport and Recreation majored in Physical Education and Health
  • Graduate Diploma in Secondary Teaching
  • Level 6 Personal Training Diploma
  • Level 2 Thump Boxing Fitness Instructor

Clark Tuagalu (Li’Manaia - Name)

Early last year in 2016, I spent almost one year travelling and living between New Zealand and Samoa, reconnecting with my culture i.e. customs, protocols and language. I have almost 20 years teaching experience at tertiary level in the area of sport and recreation. My stints include working at a Marae based Private Training Establishment, Alternative Education Centre, Bay of Plenty Polytechnic and the Wairiki Institute of Technology. After my teaching tenure at Bay of Plenty Polytechnic, I completed my Masters in Sport & Leisure Studies. Then, I spent seven years as a Health, Education and Social Research Consultant. I have enjoyed success as a coach, winning two Coastline Rugby League Premiership (Bay of Plenty) Finals in 1995 and 1997, respectively.  Today, I prefer to engage in individual based activities such as Crossfit, dance (Ceroc or modern jive) and I’m learning how to speak basic Samoan at Kelston Boys High School (a course run by the Pacific Education Centre). By 5 December, 2017, my goal at NZIS is to help at least 85% of my students graduate in Sport Studies.

Samoan Proverb

“O le tele o lima e fa’amāmā ai se avega” – “With more hands the load is lightened”.

This proverb speaks about the benefits of working together in order to successfully carry out a task but more importantly the concept of ‘support’ within āiga or family.