Topic outline

  • Year 12 Outdoor Pursuits

    Hillary Outdoor Education Centre (HOEC) Leadership Challenge

    The Hillary Outdoor Education Centre (previously the Sir Edmund Hillary Outdoor Pursuits Centre) was established in 1972 and was named after Sir Edmund Hillary (1919-2001), the first man to climb Mt Everest. For the past 43 years the centre has hosted both secondary and tertiary students, challenging them physically and mentally, through a series of outdoor based learning experiences. HOEC bases all its actions around a set of values, very similar to PNBHS, specifically: Outstanding, Ownership, Personal Integrity, Perseverance, Courage and Compassion. The centre itself is a series of buildings neatly tucked into native forest and scrubland in the Tongariro National Park. PNBHS has for many years been sending a group of selected Year 12 students to the centre for a unique week-long team and individual leadership challenge. 

    Young men are selected for this challenge based on their attitude, contribution to the school in their first three years in the school, participation in all areas of school life through the Barrowclough Programme (Academia; Character Development; Culture; Leadership; Service and Sport), through nomination by teachers on Merit Referrals for possible leadership potential as well as a selection process chaired by the Rector.

    If selected, 60 young men will be given the opportunity to travel to the HOEC early in their Year 12 Year to undertake the challenge.  For more information, please contact the Leadership Director at

    The week sees the young men working in groups of ten to conquer the challenges provided in the outdoor environment including tramping, overnight camping, navigation, cooking and living in the field, water activities which could include rafting, kayaking/canoeing, rock climbing, team challenges on high and low ropes, caving and a range of other possible outdoor options.  

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