Ngāi Tauira: supporting our Māori students

Ngāi Tauira: supporting our Māori students

In this myView blog, the University’s Māori Students’ Association Ngāi Tauira explains who they are and what they do for our Tauira Māori.

Whakaarahia ake ngā pou o tō whare o Ngāi Tauira. Mai i ngā hau e whā o Aotearoa ka tae mai te tini me te mano o te iwi Māori ki Te Whanganui-a-Tara, ki Te Herenga Waka, hei takahia rā te ara o Tāne te Wānanga. Mā Ngāi Tauira rātou e tāwharautia.  

Ngāi Tauira (NT) is the Māori Students’ Association here at Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington. We’re here to advocate for the needs and interests of Māori students at the University, and to promote and support the success of Māori in tertiary education. We work to ensure that tauira Māori have a safe space to be Māori, to be around other Māori, and to feel connected to their Māoritanga.

NT also run and facilitate events that support academic excellence and promote whakawhanaungatanga. As an association, we believe in the celebration of being Māori and being Māori in tertiary education. We are our ancestors’ wildest dreams and wherever we go, whatever we do, they are at our backs cheering us on down the path of Māori excellence. Nō reira, ko te wero ki mua i a mātou o Ngāi Tauira: me akiaki, me poipoia, me whāngai i a rātou te hunga tauira Māori, kia Māori te tū ki te whare wānanga. Tēnā, kōkiri rā! 


Come to a Matariki quiz!

NT and VUWSA are hosting a Matariki quiz night fundraiser at 6 pm on Thursday 8 July in the Hunter Lounge. Register your team of six here and we’ll see you there!

Who we are—the Ngāi Tauira executive

Katelynne Potiki-Clune and Safari Hynes Tumuaki takirua—Co-presidents of Ngāi Tauira:

Katelynne’s heritage is Ngāti Porou, Waikato-Tainui, Tapuika, Ngāi Tahu. BA majoring in Māori Resource Management and Public Policy, minoring in Te Reo Māori. Safari’s heritage is Rangitāne. Conjoint LLB + BA majoring in Te Reo Māori and Māori studies. 

Katelynne and Safari lead NT in ways that best reflect tikanga Māori & the goals of Tauira Māori at the University. They’re responsible for the functioning of the Ngāi Tauira executive and ensuring that the effective promotion of Māori student success throughout the University. It is also their responsibility to lobby for continued improvement of Māori student services from the University, by forming relationships and engaging with boards and entities like the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (DVC), the DVC (Māori), VUWSA, and many more. 

Tohu Waetford-Heketa, Tumuaki tuarua—Reo and Tikanga Vice President: Te Arawa, Ngāti Whakaue, Te Āti awa, Ngāti Hine – Bachelor of Arts, Double Major in Te Reo Māori and Māori Studies.

TohuSupports tauira Māori in the use of Te Reo and Tikanga Māori. Tohu also helps by coordinating kapa haka practices and generally being a pou tautoko for all of NT.

Areta Pakinga, Kaituhi – Secretary: Te Arawa, Ngāti Whakaue, Ngāti Tumatawera, Ngāti Raukawa, Ngāti Whakatere. Conjoint degree; Bachelor of Communications majoring in Political Communications and minor in Political Science + Bachelor of Commerce majoring in Marketing.  As Kaituhi, Areta is responsible for providing secretarial and administrational support to the Kōmiti Whakahaere of Ngāi Tauira. Arata likes to keep things organised and works behind the scenes to make sure things run smoothly.

Kiana Ringrose Perez, Kaitiaki Pūtea – Treasurer: Ngāti Tuwharetoa, Ngāti Porou, Tokelau. Graduate Diploma in Teaching (Primary) Kiana Looks after the financials for our association and liaises with the rest if the executive to ensure payments are made and events are within budget.

Maata Hamiora, Āpiha Tūmatanui—Public Communications Officer: Ngāti Raukawa ki Wharepūhunga, Tūhourangi Ngāti Wāhiao, Ngāti Whakaue. Bachelor of Arts, Major in Psychology and Minor in Criminology. Maata is always ready to be on call. Maata works on building relationships with trustworthy, positive, and genuine folks who will support and guide you.

Nicole Wilson, Āpiha Hauora—health & wellbeing officer: Ngāti Tukorehe, muaūpoko. Bachelor or Arts majoring in Criminology and Anthropology, minoring in Human Resource Management and Chinese. 

As hauora officer I am responsible for developing positive relationships with other welfare officers at Uni, and to provide support for māori students on the journey to completing their studies. Nicole helps students to release stress and make new friends through the sports leagues. She also acts as person of contact if a student has any worries about their studies and personal life and guide them on where to get help. Overall, Nicole is a supportive tuakana.

Shaadiya-Lee Filoa, Āpiha Whakangāhau—Social Events Officer: Te Rarawa, Ngāti Whatua ki Kaipara, Ngā Puhi Whānui, Waikato-Tainui. Bachelor of Science, Double Major in Marine Biology and Māori Studies

Shaadiya is responsible for organisation and leadership of all social events and activities to ensure student recruitment, engagement, and retention. Āpiha Whakangāhau works alongside the Pou Tuarongo to ensure events like Te Wiki o Te Reo Māori, Matariki, and Pūrangiaho align with tikanga Māori.

Phoebe Sullivan, Ngā Rangahautira rep and Āpiha Matauranga (interim), NR representative (Māori Law Students’ Association), and interim Academic Office: Te Aupōuri, Ngāti Whatua ki Kaipara, Ngāti Whatua ki Ōrākei, Tainui-Waikato. Bachelor of Law and Bachelor of Arts, majoring in Māori Resource Management and minor in Māori studies. 

Phoebe offers representation for Ngā Rangahautira & supports tauira Māori to work with other groups to ensure equitable outcomes for our tauira. Phoebe helps to build meaningful relationships, guiding people to reach their full potential in our academic space!

You can find us in room SU211 on level 2 of the Student Union building at Kelburn campus, or contact us via Instagram, Facebook, or email.

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