CPIT’s Rakatahi Awards recognise inspiring Māori students

News News & events

24 Nov 2011

Māori intermediate and secondary school students from around Canterbury were recognised for their outstanding 2011 achievements in a number of fields at CPIT’s Rakatahi Supreme Awards, last Thursday 17 November.

“Students have reached significant milestones on the local, national and international stage this year and they are an inspiration for us all,” says Hana O’Regan, Tumuaki at CPIT’s Te Puna Wanaka.

The Rakatahi Awards have been run by CPIT through Te Puna Wanaka, with support from the CPIT Foundation, since 2006 as part of CPIT’s vision of “whanau transformation through education”. This vision promotes individual Māori and Pasifika success through education as a key to wider social change and cultural empowerment.

The supreme awards were the culmination of three preliminary Rakatahi ceremonies held throughout 2011. Finalists were selected from students who excelled in one of the following categories: Kanohi kai mātārae (Leadership), He Rau Tītapu (Excellence in Te Reo Māori), He Rei Puta (Excellence in Sporting), Te Iti Kahuraki (Academic Excellence), He Toki ki te Rika (Excellence in Vocational Studies), He Uruka Mau Tonu (Commitment to Tikaka / Tikanga) and Eke Takaroa (Excellence in cultural Performance).

“All the students who have received awards throughout the year should be very proud. Listening to the finalists’ achievements and seeing them collect their prizes last week was a moving moment,” O’Regan says.

Awards were presented to students in age groups.  Toria Turner from Shirley Intermediate took out the Supreme Award for year 7 and 8 students for her academic achievements. Peura Paris from Te Kura Whakapūmau i Te Reo Tūturu ki Waitaha and Abrael Kahu from Kaikoura High School were runners-up for this age group.

The Year 9 and 10 Supreme Award went to Maia Matthews from Villa Maria College for her academic achievements, followed by Josh Kurene from Aranui High School and Nicky Grace Moana – Pio from Burnside High.

Connor Matthews from Christchurch Boys was the overall winner in the Year 11 and 12 group with his impressive academic record, followed by Ngamata Te Whakahawea Christie from Burnside High and Shenaegh Hayden from Te Kura Kaupapa Māori o Te Whānau Tahi .

Finally Ruby Faulkner from Christchurch Girl’s High was recognised as Supreme Winner in the Year 13 group, after winning two scholarships for tertiary study. Rachel Panapa from Linwood College and Astrid Harrison from Rangiora High School were runners-up.

O’Regan said the students who received awards at Rakatahi demonstrate hope for the future of Māori people in education. “I was inspired by the students, their whanau and their schools who were there to nurture and support students to excel at a very high level,” she said.