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Source: University of Waikato

Tauira Māori excellence at the University of Waikato has been recognised, honoured and celebrated at a recent awards ceremony on the Hamilton campus.

Ngā Tohu Toi Hau Awards highlight the top tauira Māori across the University, in areas including academic achievement and community contribution, across all years, faculties and divisions.

Deputy Vice-Chancellor Māori, Dr Sarah-Jane Tiakiwai, says the awards are a way to acknowledge a year of mahi put in by students.

“Of particular note is Te Manu Taupori, an award that’s not just about academic success. It recognises the mana of the recipient and the time and energy they put into everything they do, from study to sport, kindness to kaupapa, and students are nominated by their peers.”

This year also saw the introduction of He Rakau Taumatua, a new award similar to Te Manu Taupori, but with staff nominating students they believe go above and beyond within their communities and their academic divisions and faculties.

Te Manu Huia was awarded for only the second year, an award recognising an outstanding contribution made by a group or individual to the University. This year’s winner, Lanee Waho, was also received seven nominations for two other awards, a reflection of the extensive contribution she makes to campus life.

Dr Tiakiwai says the University’s tauira Māori are dedicated and supportive.

“It’s an honour to be able to recognise all of them and the work they have all put in this year.”

Along with award-winners, who each received a taonga designed by alumna and local designer Nichola Te Kiri, the ceremony, held at The Pā, recognised nearly 150 postgraduate tauira who have recently submitted their Masters or PhD research for completion.