Media Advisory October 28

Three Minute Thesis final

The University of Waikato Three Minute Thesis (3MT) final is on this week. Ten PhD candidates will each present their thesis in three minutes to a lay audience. The candidates are Gloria Clarke - The Successful Young Māori Men project: Extracurricular activity and the stories that we tell, Jagdeep Singh-Ladhar - A Comparative Analysis of Water Allocation Law and Policy in New Zealand and Australia, Richard Kereopa - huka can haka: Taonga performing tino rangatiratanga, Liam McMahon (FCMS) - Mathematics of Solar Flares, Ingrid Jones - Reimagining disability: Towards learning disability pride, Sripriya Somasekhar - Navigating safety in the context of immigration: Indian women experiencing domestic violence in New Zealand/Aotearoa, Onyekachi Raymond - The beauty without the beast: A chemical search for beryllium’s partner, Rebecca Gladstone-Gallagher - the role of decaying leaves in coastal ecosystems, Stephen Cantwell - Speaking towards hazard perception, and Chanelle Gavin - Innovative bio-foam packaging from proteins. The 3MT final is at the Gallagher Academy of Performing Arts on Thursday, October 30 at 7pm. Entry is free but numbers are limited. For more information visit

Founding Dean for Fulbright lecture

Nationhood, Māori-Pakeha relationships and the place of Māori in New Zealand’s future will be addressed in a lecture by the University of Waikato’s founding dean of the School of Māori and Pacific Development next month. Sir Tamati Reedy, also the university’s founding Pro Vice-Chancellor Māori and its first Māori emeritus professor, will deliver his free and public Fulbright Lecture on 11 November. Sir Tamati (Ngāti Porou) is a Fulbright alumnus and one of New Zealand’s leading educationalists, academics and linguists, along with being a former top public servant. His lecture, Nga Wai Whakaata o Hine-Kauorohia: The Reflecting Waters of Hine-Kauorohia, will be held in S Block at 6pm on 11 November and will cover our sense of nationhood, which, he says, is the mauri, the life-essence, of Aotearoa New Zealand.

Tauranga’s Café Scientifique hosts Dame Anne Salmond in Rutherford Lectures

Dame Anne Salmond, renowned New Zealand anthropologist and writer, will speak at this year’s Royal Society of New Zealand Rutherford Lectures in Tauranga tonight. In one of four lectures she will explore how exchanges between different ways of being, particularly Māori and European, have helped to shape the past in New Zealand, and how they might contribute to an innovative and successful society for future generations. Dame Anne Salmond was named New Zealander of the Year in 2013 for her work on cultural history and is a Distinguished Professor of Māori Studies and Anthropology at the University of Auckland. The Café is on today at 6.30pm for 7pm start at the Tauranga Yacht and Power Boat Club, 90 Keith Allen Drive, Sulphur Point, Tauranga. For more information, visit: or

Hamilton Boys’ High wins ChemQuest…again

Students from Hamilton Boys’ High School took out the top prize for the second year in a row at the University of Waikato’s ChemQuest challenge held last week on campus. First place went to Year 12 students Alex Paris, Soumil Singh and Lucas Sherlock from Hamilton Boys’ High School. The students were awarded the James and Wells trophy, $150 and a gold medal each. The ChemQuest two-year clean sweep adds to Hamilton Boys’ High School’s consecutive victories at the 2013 and 2014 NZIC Analytical Chemistry Competition also held at the university. This was also the second year in a row that all place-getters were from Hamilton schools. Second place went to Hillcrest High School, third and fourth were awarded to separate teams from St Paul’s Collegiate, followed by another team from Hamilton Boys’ High School in fifth place. The annual chemistry quiz gives Year 12 students the chance to put their chemistry knowledge to the test in a pop quiz-style challenge.

Students get their satisfaction

Domestic students are overwhelmingly happy with the University of Waikato, scoring it highly in terms of learning, living, support and arrival on campus, according to a new student satisfaction survey. The survey, of 3257 domestic students - 37% of the domestic student population - was carried out earlier this year and found satisfaction levels high across a range of areas. It found 93% of students were either satisfied or very satisfied with the university, comparing favourably with a similar survey of international students in 2013. Teaching quality scored highly, as did the campus environment, accommodation and overall support. Some areas identified for improvement have already been recognised by the university, with the introduction of a new Career Development Services team, which is working to support faculties with internships and career initiatives. The university has also made internet access free and unlimited for students from next year. The survey will be repeated in 2015 for international and domestic students.

Grappling with copyright

Traditional laws of copyright are under threat from 21st century technology. Visiting Law Foundation Distinguished Fellow Professor Jane C Ginsburg will be giving a public lecture at the University of Waikato on issues of copyright and access to information. Professor Ginsberg says access to “all the world’s knowledge” is an ancient aspiration, but equally important is the protection of authors’ rights. If all works are to be found in a universal digital library, that threatens the incomes of copyright holders, so what’s needed instead may be a universal bookstore. Professor Ginsburg is the Morton L Janklow Professor of Literary and Artistic Property Law at Columbia University School of Law in New York, and Faculty Director of its Kernochan Center for Law, Media and the Arts. The public lecture will be at the Te Whare Tapere Iti, Gallagher Academy of Performing Arts, University of Waikato on November 10 at 5.45pm.

Pick up sticks – engineering style

Picking commercial pine tree seedlings is about to get a whole lot easier thanks to a class of engineering students from the University of Waikato. As part of a third-year mechanical engineering design paper, 10 teams of students were each asked to create a prototype that could collect nine metal pins along a track, then reverse and drop the pins in a box at the end. The process is designed to emulate the act of picking pine tree seedlings. The winning team’s prototype collected and deposited the most pins in the fastest time. The inventions were tested at the Carter Holt Harvey Pulp & Paper Engineering Design Show last week. The winners on the day were Gordon Jackson (Paeroa College), Ben Plumtree (Hawera High School), Nate Ryan and Mark Edwards (St John’s College Hamilton) with their vehicle named Zeus, which stood out for its speed and accuracy. The project was part of a much wider research collaboration with tree improvement and treestock production business ArborGen Australasia.

University to host historical garden tours

From cow paddock to botanical gem, the University of Waikato grounds have undergone a transformation in the past 50 years. To celebrate, the university is hosting 50th Anniversary Celebration Tours of its gardens and grounds led by Ron Lycette, the grounds supervisor from 1965-1979. Mr Lycette came to the university having previously worked at London's Kew Gardens. Mr Lycette says they started with an overall plan to impart education into the gardens, aiming for a succession of plants in family relationships to illustrate botanical diversity. Tours are free, and are on Saturday 8 November, Sunday 9 November and Wednesday 12 November from 2pm-5pm. Mr Lycette will present a brief history of the background and development of the campus landscape, followed by a guided tour of the grounds and a high tea. A gold coin donation will go towards stage two of the Rongoa (Māori medicine) garden. Tours are limited to 30 people each, so registrations are essential. RSVP name and date choice to

Of Calendars and Kings: UK professor to deliver lecture on archaeoastronomy

The Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences will welcome Clive Ruggles, Emeritus Professor of Archaeoastronomy in the School of Archaeology and Ancient History at the University of Leicester in the UK, to campus this week. Professor Ruggles will deliver a public lecture, ‘Of Calendars and Kings: gods, temples, the Pleiades, and the development of archaic states in Hawai’i’, in which he describes his fieldwork with archaeologist Patrick V Kirch studying the orientations of temple platforms and their connections with astronomy, the calendar, dryland agriculture and the emergence of “god-king” cults. Professor Ruggles has worked in many parts of the world and published numerous books, papers and articles on topics ranging from prehistoric Europe and pre-Columbian America to indigenous astronomies in Africa and elsewhere. He has ongoing fieldwork projects in Peru and the Hawaiian Islands. This free community event is on Friday, October 31 at 5pm in S.G.01 (S Block, University of Waikato).

Language revitalisation focus of symposium

A day-long symposium on the revitalisation of te reo Māori will provide an opportunity for teachers and researchers to share their views and experiences and learn from others. The symposium – which will be open to the public – is to be held at the University of Waikato on Saturday, December 13 and will include presentations on teaching and learning te reo Māori and policy and planning issues. It is being hosted by Te Pua Wānanga ki te Ao (The School of Māori and Pacific Development) and School Manager Louise Tainui says it will be a good opportunity to learn from people at the forefront of the revitalisation of the language. People interested in either attending or presenting at Te Whakahaumanutanga o te reo Māori Symposium should contact Louise Tainui on or visit:

Conference of interest to policymakers

The InternationalAssociation for Contemporary Ethnography Across the Disciplines' third biennial hui will be held from November 25-28 at the University of Waikato. This methodological and methods conference circulating around the broad field of ethnography offers cultural understandings to policymakers. The conference theme is 'Sensual Landscapes in Ethnography', and many papers will explore the connections between lived sensory and sensual experiences and the contemporary world, between the personal and the public. Pre-conference presentations will include papers delivered in Spanish and Portuguese, workshops ranging from working with Harakeke plants, history, and context of Māori weaving; site-specific performance of research; participatory research; video ethnography practices; and civic engagement and study of sub-groups. Keynote presentations will discuss political engagement and performance; waka travels and rediscovery of ancestral knowledge; and a creative, participatory demonstration will show how performance can connect us to the land, traditions, and local sites. For more information, and to register, visit 

Former Waikato Uni student receives top rugby award

University of Waikato alumnus and Waikato Rugby Union player Whetu Douglas received high recognition recently for his outstanding role in rugby. The former Gisborne Boys’ High School student was awarded the Aaron Hopa Memorial Trophy at the Waikato Rugby Awards recently for his outstanding contribution to team culture within the Waikato ITM Cup team. Whetu was a Hillary scholar at University, which is an all fees paying scholarship designed to foster leadership potential in students while they study and pursue their discipline in sport or the arts. While at University, Whetu was part of Te Tohu Paetahi, a total Māori immersion programme before undertaking a conjoint degree in arts and sport and leisure. Whetu hopes to again secure the number six jersey in the Waikato ITM team, and hopefully progress to Super 15 honours in the coming seasons.

Campus fun run underway at university

Keen runners and walkers have been making the most of the warmer weather by taking part in the Campus 5km Fun Run and Walk which re-launched a few weeks ago at the University of Waikato. The event, which is hosted by the university in association with the Hamilton City Hawks Running Club and UniRec, sees participants making their way around a marked course on the university grounds. This is the second time the series has been held. Businesses on campus, including ANZ, Bongo Sushi and Dezigner Hair, have donated spot prizes for the event. The Campus 5km Fun Run and Walk takes place every Monday till December 15, and will start again in February. Registrations start at 5pm outside Momento Café, next to the lake on the Village Green. Walkers start between 5pm and 6pm, while runners start at 6pm. Registration is $6 and entitle participants to a beer, cider or non-alcoholic drink. Spot prizes are also awarded on the night. The Campus 5km Fun Run and Walk is held in association with the Hamilton City Hawks running club, UniRec, Momento Café and Good George. For more information, email

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