Programme Details


To enable Māori students at the University of Waikato, to become global citizens, leaders and role models in te ao Māori, te ao mātauranga and te ao whānui.


  • To identify useful practices that aid academic success;
  • To increase confidence, knowledge and appreciation of te reo Māori, tikanga Māori and te ao Māori;
  • To build self-confidence in a range of social, cultural and political environments;
  • To create positive networking relationships;
  • To be prepared for future employment opportunities;
  • To develop capabilities that enhance personal growth, future opportunities and community connectedness.


  • Tikanga/te reo Māori: Upholding and celebrating our culture through the use of te reo Māori me ōna tikanga.
  • Taumata: Encouraging high achievement and excellence that breeds success in all areas.
  • Tuakana-teina: Providing an open and positive environment where knowledge and understanding can be exchanged between new participants, Alumni and previous programme participants.
  • Whanaungatanga: Providing opportunities to connect and engage with others.
  • Whanaketanga: Navigating future pathways that can contribute to the advancement of Māori individuals and communities.
  • Rangatiratanga: Building the confidence and capability of participants.


The Te Āhurutanga Māori Student Leadership Programme will focus on four key areas of learning:

  1. Ngā pūkenga – Capability building
  2. Ngā taonga tuku iho – Cultural empowerment
  3. Ngā hapori whānui – Community engagement
  4. Ngā hononga – Strengthening connections

Ngā Pūkenga – Capability building

Participants will engage in self-reflection and goal setting activities to evaluate their current capabilities and future direction. They will be asked to consider questions like:

  • Where am I now?
  • Where do I want to be in 1, 2, 5 or 10 years’ time?
  • How am I going to get there? How am I actually going to get there?

Participants will be expected to engage in activities and understand how the lessons being taught can be beneficial to their personal development.  Participants should be well prepared for real world challenges and opportunities.

Ngā taonga tuku iho – Cultural empowerment

Participants will be involved in cultural activities that empower them to participate confidently in te ao Māori.  It is anticipated that participants will have different levels of confidence in these areas, so there is no requirement to be proficient in te reo Māori me ōna tikanga.  However, it is expected that participants will proactively engage in the activities to enhance their cultural knowledge.  Care will be taken to ensure that all cultural activities occur in a positive, nurturing and supportive environment.

Ngā hapori whānui – Community engagement

Engagement activities will occur between participants and Māori individuals, organisations and communities, emphasising the values of reciprocity and knowledge sharing.  Participants will be supported and encouraged to engage in community level projects, preferably with whānau, hapū and iwi, to understand how their skills and knowledge can be beneficial to te ao Māori.

Ngā hononga – Strengthening connections

Participants will experience activities and opportunities to network and mix with a wide range of people in different environments. This is intended to expand participants’ comfort zones and enable them to engage confidently in any situation.