General School Info

Welcome to South Seas Film & TV School

  • Thank you for your interest in South Seas and our training courses.

    We are a leading New Zealand Film, Television, Screen Acting, Animation and Photography training institution with an excellent reputation for delivering professional industry training. Our intensive hands-on practical courses have proven to be the best way of training people to gain the experience and confidence they need to work effectively in the media industry.
    NZQA carried out an External Evaluation & Review (EER) in June 2015. The outcome of this review resulted in South Seas being granted Category 1 status: “Highly Confident” in both Educational Performance and Capability in Self-Assessment.  Category 1 Providers have an audit carried out within 3-4 years. You can find the latest EER report (PDF) here.
    With the continual development of exciting new digital media technology now is an exciting time to join us to learn new skills. By coming on-board what some graduates have aptly described as ‘a fast ride to future success’ you are preparing to take off and become part of an industry that is really going places.

    School Overview
  • Gerben Cath with South Seas students

Mission Statement

Mission Statement

  • At South Seas we believe production skills and knowledge are best learned through practical experience. We therefore offer a range of hands on, industry related, training courses. As a training institution our aim and mission is to:

    • To provide a positive safe, learning environment that is friendly towards our students and supports all their personal requirements.
    • To acknowledge and nurture the creativity and full potential of each student without prejudice to race, creed, colour or socio-economic background.
    • To act with integrity, maintain a sense of responsibility towards students and staff and adopt high ethical standards in all our business practices.
    • Provide a quality service that is consistent, reliable, result driven and available at a realistic cost.
    • Maintain an industry relevant training institution that has the respect and support of the industry and clients it serves.
  • South Seas Film & TV School

    South Seas Film & TV School

Training Aims

Training Aims

    • To provide students with a competent knowledge and appreciation of the overall structures and business practices of the Film, Television, Digital Media and Animation Industries.
    • To introduce students to the operational practices and technical/creative vocational skill requirements of the above Industries.
    • To provide students with the practical knowledge, skills and confidence to enable them to successfully take up trainee positions within these Industries and then develop a professional career in their chosen specialist skills.
    • To provide students with the knowledge, skills and confidence that will allow them to produce their own, or participate in, the production of film, video, television programmes, digital media and on-screen acting work to a professionally recognised skill level.
    • To encourage students to enjoy using their imagination, talents, skills and creativity while experimenting with and exploring the full potential of the communication/craft medium that they will be working with.
  • South Seas Film & TV School

    South Seas Film & TV School

Training Methods

Training Methods

    • All courses have a strong emphasis on Accelerated Learning techniques and a ‘Learning-Through-Action’ philosophy.
    • Class sizes are restricted to ensure that each student has access to the required equipment and facilities.
    • All essential course subjects are taught by qualified industry experienced tutors. Additional qualified industry practitioners are employed to provide further training in specialised subjects as and when required.
    • Each diploma course has been allocated appropriate industry relevant equipment, computers and software with additional access to shared school facilities in order to enhance course delivery.
    • To achieve our stated aims all courses are designed to teach the theoretical aspects in conjunction with a wide range of practical exercises using professional training equipment and industry work practices. Experience has shown that this is the most reliable and rewarding method of training students in the essential film, television, animation, photography and other digital media production skills.
  • South Seas Film & TV School

    South Seas Film & TV School

School Background

South Seas Panorama@72 dpi

South Seas Film and Television School was founded in 1991 by Gerben Cath using his film production company studio facilities on Auckland’s North Shore. In 1992 David Coddington joined South Seas and the company started delivering its Film and Television Production course, In 1993 Rob Verhoeven and in 1997 Nerida Cath joined Gerben and David as shareholders and directors of South Seas.

After the departure of Rob in 2004 Gerben, David and Nerida developed South Seas into New Zealand’s leading Film, Television, Animation and Media industry relevant practical raining institution with a network of over 1,870 graduates who have obtained industry work.

In 2016 South Seas entered into negotiations initially with Animation College NZ and later with ACG Group in order to join their proposed vocational training division so that the future development and aims of South Seas as a leading Film, Television and Media training provider could be fully realised.

On the 1st of December 2016 South Seas officially became part of Academic College Group’s NZ Vocational Group which for 2017 consists of:

  • ACG Yoobee School of Design
  • Animation College
  • AMES – Institute of IT
  • South Seas Film & Television School
Company Governance Declaration

South Seas Film and Television School Ltd hereby declares the following:- South Seas Film and Television School Ltd (NZ Company Registration No: AK-1118992) which operates from its campus at 3/75 Ellice Road, Glenfield, Auckland, NZ is owned by the following three shareholders Mr Gerben Cath (312,000 shares), Mrs Nerida Cath (300,000 shares) and Mr David Coddington (300,000 shares). The 3 shareholders are also the 3 principal directors of the company. The registered office of the company is at 5 William Laurie Place, Albany, Auckland and the company with the current shareholders was incorporated on the 27th of February 2001.

The above three shareholders also have financial interests in two other South Seas companies which have been setup expressly to protect the interests of students attending South Seas Film & Television School courses. The three South Seas companies are as follows.

  1. 1. South Seas Film and Television School Ltd which is registered by the NZQA and accredited to deliver the media industry practical training courses that the company has developed and owns. This company is responsible for enrolling students onto the school’s courses, collecting the course fees owing and paying all associated course delivery costs.
  2. 2. South Seas Holdings Ltd a separate business entity which is owned and operated by the same 3 South Seas FTVS Ltd shareholders. This company was set up to purchase one of the 6 office/warehouse units that the school occupies and leases. It also owns some of the equipment that the school uses to deliver its training courses.
  3. 3. South Seas International Ltd another separate business entity which again is owned and operated by the same 3 South Seas FTVS Ltd shareholders. This company was set up so that any commercial industry training courses delivered to international clients including the Korean Film Commission and Singapore Ministry of Education are kept separate from the student training business delivered by SSFTVS Ltd in order to protect student interests.
Statutory Declaration

Mr Gerben Cath, Mrs Nerida Cath and Mr David Coddington as shareholders and company directors as well as Gerben Cath as company Managing Director and School Director, Nerida Cath as General Manager, and David Coddington as Associate School Director hereby formally declare that apart from the above declared business interests (which have been setup to benefit our tertiary students and do not involve any conflict of interest issues) the three director/shareholders declare that they:-

  • Do not have any actual or potential conflicts of interest arising from their roles as governing members of South Seas as a Private Training Entity and
  • Do not have any other interests or obligations in any other organisations or businesses in the education or immigration sector that provide goods or services to tertiary students.