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Published: 2015-11-18 00:00:00

A desire to contribute to good outcomes for Māori and the environment is common amongst this year’s five winners of the Waikato Regional Council and Waikato-Tainui Dame Te Atairangikaahu Scholarships.

The announcement of the scholarships to the five students, and presentations to two of them, was made at Hopuhopu, near Ngāruawāhia, today by Heeni Katipa (nee Paki) the eldest daughter of Dame Te Atairangikaahu.

A $4000 scholarship has gone to fourth-year Te Reo Māori and Education student Lamoni Tawha of Waikato-Tainui (Aramiro marae), who is planning to do a masters degree and work as a teacher.

Psychology student Sarah Hutana-Te Aho of Ngāti Kahungunu (Rongomaraeroa and Waimārama marae) and Law and Te Reo student Georgia Woodward of Ngāti Kahungunu ki Waiarapa (Hurunui o Rangi marae), gained third year studies scholarships worth $1000 and $2000 respectively. Sarah says she wants to work for her iwi in resources management, while Georgia plans to be involved in a Māori-focused law environment.

Te Amorangi Heremaia-Flavell of Waikato-Tainui (Tūrangawaewae marae) and Tekiteora Rolleston-Gabel of Ngāi Tūhoe, Ngāti Kahu and Ngāi Te Rangi (Owhakatoro and Te Paatu marae), were granted $1000 each in the first and second year studies categories. Te Amorangi plans to be involved with the environment and the protection of iwi interests in natural resources, while Tekiteora wants to develop a career in scientific research, with a particular focus on its correlation to Māori knowledge.

The Waikato Regional Council and Waikato-Tainui – Dame Te Atairangikaahu Scholarships were established in 1991 to mark the 25th anniversary of the accession of Te Arikinui, Dame Te Atairangikaahu, to pay tribute to her leadership of the Māori people and support further education of Māori people in the Waikato region studying at the University of Waikato.

The chair of Te Arataura o Waikato-Tainui Rahui Papa applauds the regional council and recipients on this fantastic milestone.

“This scholarship is aimed at fostering leadership and prioritizing education to unlock the potential of our people. For Te Arikinui it was about protecting the environment while supporting our young people to build prosperous lives and participate at all levels of society. She would be very proud of these recipients,” said Mr Papa. 

The chair of Waikato Regional Council Paula Southgate, who attended the ceremony, said: “We’re very pleased to be part of these scholarships supporting the success of Māori students in our region, particularly in the context of our river co-management relationship with Waikato-Tainui and other iwi.”