Michele Whitecliffe

Michele Whitecliffe has been President of Whitecliffe College of Arts & Design since the death of her husband in 2001.  Whitecliffe College was born out of a need for two people to make a living in the industry they were passionate about and while it began as a part time college it has grown into a private degree granting institution competing with the best in New Zealand.

Michele grew up in Wellington, but moved to Auckland with family, straight out of secondary school and attended ATI Auckland Technical Institute (now known as AUT)  gaining a Certificate in Business Management and secretarial skills.  For the next few years, she worked for Air New Zealand, before deciding this was not the career for her.  This followed a few years of travel and adventure before finally returning to Auckland to set up an employment agency known as Lorne Street Bureau.  In 1981 keen to get back into the arts which she was most passionate about she attended art classes where she meet Greg.  The following year they married and a new journey began establishing Whitecliffe Art School.  The School changed it's name in 1994 to reflect the status of the College and separate it from people thinking it was a high school.

Whitecliffe College of Arts and Design currently has around 450 students offering degrees in post graduate and under graduate degrees: MFA (Master of Fine Arts), MAAM (Master of Arts in Arts Management) and the second largest department in the College is the MAAT (Master of Arts in Arts Therapy).  The largest cohort is in the BFA (Bachelor of Fine Arts) which has four majors:

Fashion Design, Graphic Design, Fine Arts and Photo Media.  The College also offers an 18 week level four programme ideal for students who need to prepare a portfolio for an undergraduate degree.