Tue 10 Nov 2020

Sparking a passion for science with WhyOra

WITT’s nursing staff and students participated in the WhyOra Pūtaiao Expo held last week, supporting WhyOra’s aim to inspire pūtaiao (science) as a passion for Taranaki’s young people.

Over 200 Māori secondary tauira (students) from 13 Taranaki high schools and three Kura Kaupapa learnt about pūtaiao (science), in all its forms, at the three-day workshop. The Pūtaiao Expo aims to spark a passion for science, to inspire, engage and encourage students to pursue science in their senior years at school and beyond.  

WhyOra, also known as Whakatipuranga Rima Rau Trust, created this space for Māori secondary students to learn, explore and pathway into science as a career. It’s a great opportunity for Taranaki rangatahi (youth) to have a go at something new. 

“Pūtaiao is a collective effort to inspire, engage and encourage secondary students to get excited by science,” said Tanya Anaha, General Manager of WhyOra.

For WITT, the Expo offers an opportunity to promote nursing as a career. 

“We’ve always supported this kaupapa - for us it is about inspiring Māori learners into nursing or a science pathway through playing, role modelling and korero (talking),” said WITT Nursing Lecturer Dee-Anna Ritai-Te Awa.

“WITT nursing staff always look forward to seeing students kanohi ki te kanohi (face to face) and saying ‘Yes, it’s possible - you can become a registered nurse’. Every Māori whānau should have a Registered Nurse.”

This is the fifth time that WhyOra has hosted Pūtaiao, and the event was supported this year by WITT, Te Kāhui o Taranaki Iwi Trust, the Department of Conservation/Taranaki Mounga, and Wellington based Awhina and Star Dome.

“Nau te rourou, naku te rourou, ka ora te manuhiri.” – With your food basket and my food basket, the people will thrive.

Pictured: Bachelor of Nursing students Jody and Te Aroha, with WITT lecturer Dee-Anna.