HomeProgrammesAcademy Defence Pathways

Academy Defence Pathways

Academy Defence Pathways

Level 2

Are you considering a career in the New Zealand Defence Force? U-Skills Defence Pathways will provide you the knowledge, skills and confidence to explore the many options available and how to get there.

Defence force cadets sitting at computers
Quick info

Level: 2

Locations: UCOL Te Pūkenga Manawatū in Palmerston North and Otaki

Starting: Week of 12 Feb 2024
Finishing: Week ending 27 Sep 2024
Delivery days:
Palmerston North - Fridays
Otaki - Thursdays

Domestic Fees: *

Scholarship info

International Fees:*
Please enquire for details

Additional Fees
Compulsory course costs may apply.

* Fees are indicative only, and are inclusive of the student services levy and GST (goods and services tax). The fee shown is for one year of study.

Throughout this programme you will gain leadership skills and learn about team communication and stress management. You will also engage in outdoor activities including overnight stays as you learn the physical requirements to make it through the recruitment process.

How to apply
If you're interested in applying for this programme, talk to your careers advisor at school. Application is arranged in partnership with your parents/caregivers and your school. Once you've talked to everyone required, you can use the form below to apply.

 Course Hours & Duration

Delivered from 9am - 3pm in each location.

Palmerston North - Fridays
Otaki - Thursdays

 Career & Study Outcomes

Successful completion of the UCOL Te Pūkenga Academy Defence Pathways Programme is the first step in a journey. This programme can lead to:
  • U-Skills Police Pathways Level 3
Career options includes:
  • Army
  • Navy Officer
  • Air force
  • Police

 Course Information

This programme comprises 24 credits.

Unit Standard 28511 (Level 3) (Version 2) (5 Credits)
Manage and evaluate personal health and wellbeing to participate in a specific recreation activity.

Unit Standard 9677 (Level 2) (Version 11) (3 Credits)
Communicate in a team or group which has an objective.

Unit Standard 12355 (Level 2) (Version 7) (3 Credits)
Describe strategies for managing stress.

Unit Standard 7123 (Level 2) (Version 8) (2 Credits)
Apply a problem-solving method.

Unit Standard 12349 (Level 2) (Version 7) (3 Credits)
Demonstrate knowledge of time management

Unit Standard 32835 (Level 2) (Version 1) (3 Credits)
Demonstrate knowledge of weather information, introductory survival skills and the use of maps in the outdoors.

Unit Standard 32843 (Level 2) (Version 1) (3 Credits)
Demonstrate knowledge of how personal contribution influences group functioning in an outdoor activity.

Units Standard 26249 (Level 2) (Version 2) (2 Credits)
Demonstrate skills for an overnight tramp.

 Domestic Entry Requirements

For year 11 - 13 secondary school learners (NZ Citizens, permanent residents or learners with an applicable visa allowing them to be enrolled in a secondary school).

Applications are to be received from participating schools.

Recommended school subjects include:

  • Maths
  • Chemistry
  • Physics
  • Construction
  • Mechanical Technologies
  • English
  • Digital Technologies


For more information about NCEA Credits see the UCOL Te Pūkenga NCEA explained page.

 International Entry Requirements

Please enquire for details

 Advice & Guidance

This programme is part of a suite of 'Academy'programmes offered by UCOL Te Pūkenga to secondary learners seeking to explore their career options while still in school. Gain practical experience and NCEA Credits.

How to apply
If you're interested in applying for the UCOL Te Pūkenga Academy Defence Pathways Programme, talk to your careers advisor at school. Application is arranged in partnership with your parents/caregivers and your school.

Fees-free when criteria are met.

Transport assistance is available if you meet the criteria.

Attendance expectations
Learners must maintain appropriate attendance at both secondary school and Academy to remain enrolled in the Academy Programme.

Verified primary ID

All learners should submit a verified primary ID (e.g. birth certificate or passport) for their first enrolment into any UCOL Te Pūkenga programme/course (online or face to face) or if the verified ID is not held online yet.

 Additional Costs

Each week you are required to bring a pen, paper and your lunch each week.

Please note
There is no cost to participate in this programme, however, you will be required to source the following equipment for any overnight learning experiences. 
  • Waterproof jacket
  • Two sets of thermal tops
  • Woollen/polypro beanie
  • Lightweight woollen gloves
  • Boots (preferably lightweight or tramping variety) or tough well-fitting shoes
  • Head torch
  • Backpack (minimum 40Ltr capacity) 
  • Sleeping bag