Sun 4 Dec 2016

Lunch and stories

WITT's Maori and Pasifika students celebrated the ending of their year with lunch at Te Piere o Te Rangi on Wednesday, and shared stories about their journeys.

Nursing graduate Rose Eru quoted a proverb which  the Maori Academic Network across Universities in Aotearoa uses: Ko te manu kai i te miro, nōna te ngahere, ko te manu kai i te mātauranga, nōna te ao.

It translates to the bird that eats the miro berry has the forest, the bird that eats of knowledge has the whole world.

She said her personal experience with the health system, and admiration for the people who work in it, had influenced her decision to study nursing.

Hairdressing graduate Brooke Utiger said she was sad that her three years at WITT was coming to an end, because the institute had been like a family to her. She had also grown in confidence, to the point that she had joined the student council.

BJ Moke said the WITT experience had led to significant changes in his life – he had spent countless hours in the library studying, was now confident of picking up work – and recently had moved into a new home and stopped smoking. He paid tribute to the work of tutors, support services and the nurturing environment of Te Piere and Kopa Manaaki

The Kaitakawhaenga Maori and Pasifika, Allana Prestney, told students their journey to success  could be measured beyond their academic achievements, because she had seen many examples of where they came in nervous and unsure, but left with their heads up and full of confidence.

And her message to students who had not secured work for 2017 was to come back for more study.

Picture: Allana Prestney with students, from left, BJ Moke, Brooke Utiger and Cheyenne Warren-Tiplady.