This summer the Chronicle is bringing you another look at some of the best content of 2019. This story originally ran on June 7, 2019
A former chef and dairy farmer, and an anthropology degree holder and shearing worker, have joined the ranks of the Whanganui Police.
Constables Dwayne Housiaux and Summer Pritchard are the latest graduates from New Zealand Police College to be stationed in Whanganui. Both graduated on May 9.
Housiaux grew up in Levin then spent 10 years working as a chef in Wellington cafes.
For the past two years, he has been dairy farming in Hawke's Bay, milking 1600 cows twice a day.
"That really got my fitness up for Police College," Housiaux said.
"I always wanted to join the police. It was a dream of mine."
He wants to eventually work for the police in the area of mental health.
Pritchard had a rural upbringing in Pongaroa, went to school in Masterton and attended Waikato University where she did a degree in anthropology.
After graduating she worked as a teacher aide in Pahiatua before going back into the shearing industry, which her family is closely involved in. In 2017 Pritchard was third in the New Zealand championships for junior wool classing.
Pritchard's aim is to work in Youth Aid.
"I have a strong passion for working with kids, especially vulnerable kids," she said.
"That's what I did as a teacher aide. I got into the police because I wanted to help people in the community.
"In the shearing industry I worked with lots of different people and ethnicities so I feel I can relate to people. Also my degree is in anthropology which is the study of people."
The graduates were not quite sure what they were getting into with their posting to Whanganui.
Usually Police College students have a placement at the station where they will work but because of police commitments to Christchurch following the terrorist attack, the local deployments did not take place for their wing.
However, now they are on the job, Pritchard and Housiaux say they are enjoying being in Whanganui.
Housiaux said he always expected to love the job "but now I'm here I'm absolutely fizzing".
Pritchard had expected she would do her probationary period in Whanganui then move somewhere else.
"But I really love it here," she said.
"The Whanganui community is great."
Both were full of praise for their local trainer Aaron White who was helping them settle into the job.
"He's been really welcoming and is a great teacher," Pritchard said.
They were happy to talk to anyone who was considering a career in the police.
Acting response manager Sergeant Mike Craig said Whanganui had received 24 new staff in the past 15 months as part of the Government's commitment to recruiting 1800 extra police nationwide.
"Some have replaced outgoing staff but there is an increase in frontline staff," Craig said.
The recent recruits were bringing diversity and new energy to the Whanganui station, he said.