Hillary Scholars in the News


  • All doom, no gloom (13 March 2019)

    Waikato graduate Shoshana Sachi has cracked Hollywood. She currently writes for TV show Doom Patrol, starring Brendan Fraser and Timothy Dalton.

  • From Chicago law to professional rugby in Scotland, Mungo’s in boots and all (13 March 2019)

    Tauranga law student Mungo Mason may miss his graduation ceremony but it's for a good cause - he's pursuing a professional rugby career in his homeland of Scotland.

  • It runs in the family (1 March 2019)

    Hillary scholars Joey Field (cricket) and Ally Wollaston (cycling) are starting at the University this week, both following in the footsteps of an older sibling in the same sport.

  • Hillary Medal awardees announced (8 February 2019)

    Top vocal performer Felicity Tomkins and netball player Sam Sinclair have been named Sir Edmund Hillary medallists for 2018.

  • High and dry (5 February 2019)

    Top swimmer Claudia Ashby is off to Nepal to climb to Ama Dablam Base Camp and fundraise for the Himalayan Trust Literacy Programme.

  • Dancing her way to Nepal (29 January 2019)

    Kaylee Bird is swapping New Zealand summer for a trek up the Himalayas as she and three other Step Higher Award recipients head to Nepal next month.

  • Playing his way into uni (22 January 2019)

    Fergus Byett, dux and head boy, pianist, saxophonist and organist, and now a Hillary Scholar.

  • From hockey fields to mountain slopes (21 January 2019)

    Garrick du Toit is one of four Step Higher Awardees who will travel to Nepal to fundraise for the Himalayan Trust, trek around the Khumbu Valley (including part of Mount Everest) and volunteer in local schools and hospitals.

  • Silver Fern steps higher (11 January 2019)

    Silver Fern Sam Sinclair is now off to Nepal to climb to Ama Dablam Base Camp and fundraise for the Himalayan Trust Literacy Programme.

  • A Wales of a time (18 December 2018)

    University of Waikato Hillary Scholar Michaela Kerr will be heading to Wales next year for a semester-long exchange at Cardiff University.

  • It’s uni in the Bay for Bae (10 December 2018)

    Water polo and volleyball rising star Bae Fountain was awarded a University of Waikato Sir Edmund Hillary Scholarship to study a Bachelor of Science majoring in Environmental Science and Aquaculture at the new Tauranga city campus in 2019.

  • Dancing from the heart (3 December 2018)

    December’s graduation ceremony will mark the end of an academic journey and the start of a year-long travel adventure for 21-year-old dancer Courtney Richmond.

  • Top students recognised at Blues Awards (11 October 2018)

    A Black Stick, a rowing champion, a kapa haka performer and an international composer were among the 52 students acknowledged for their achievements at this year’s Wallace Group University of Waikato Blues Awards.

  • Creating a legacy through language (10 September 2018)

    Rotorua Hillary Scholar Arapeta Paea is determined to retrieve and nurture the language lost to three generations of his family.

  • Waikato futsal champs off to Kazakhstan (2 August 2018)

    Three University of Waikato students will head to Kazakhstan this month to represent New Zealand in the 2018 World University Futsal Championships.

  • Waikato student wins Emerging Leaders Award (27 July 2018)

    Kaylee Bird took out the top law prize at the New Zealand Emerging Leaders Awards this month. Competing against the country’s top emerging leaders in the profession, she says it was a “real honour” to have her leadership skills recognised.

  • A career going places (25 July 2018)

    Soprano Blaire White has won a Pettman DARE Fellowship to study in the UK for a year.

  • Sing to the elephants (7 June 2018)

    Forget talking to the animals, Niamh Lovelock is taking her Bachelor of Music major in Voice all the way to an elephant sanctuary in Thailand where she plans to sing to them.

  • A head for numbers, a heart for promises (7 June 2018)

    Valued alumna, successful businesswoman, TEDx speaker and marathon runner, Vanessa Oshima shares her inspirational story of friendship, resilience and promises kept.

  • Music to their ears (10 May 2018)

    University of Waikato Hillary scholars Matthias Balzat and Filipe Manu have been awarded the 2018 Patricia Pratt Scholarship in musical performance – two of only three recipients this year.

  • Gold Coast medal glory (19 April 2018)

    Congratulations to University of Waikato current and former students who competed in the 2018 Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast, bringing home two gold medals, two silvers and a bronze.

  • From hockey field to graduation stage (17 April 2018)

    When hockey champion Natasha Fitzsimons graduates at Claudelands next week, she can proudly reflect on her long list of achievements over the past three years.

  • From audience member to top performer (22 February 2018)

    University of Waikato alumna Noelle Dannenbring performed at Rotorua’s Lakeside 2018 on Saturday, a concert she has watched her whole life.

  • Waikato sevens team wins National Tertiary Championships (5 February 2018)

    University of Waikato Women’s Sevens team wins UTSNZ Championships at FMG Stadium.

  • Climbing in Sir Ed’s footsteps (1 February 2018)

    Toby Beisly becomes the first mountaineer ever to receive the University of Waikato Sir Edmund Hillary Scholarship.

  • Sir Edmund Hillary Medal awardees announced (9 January 2018)

    Cellist Matthias Balzat and and all-rounder Stacey Waaka given prestigious award.

  • Waikato alum conquers Mount Chimborazo (8 January 2018)

    Tim Stewart conquers Mount Chimborazo, the farthest point from the centre of the Earth.

  • Following in Sir Ed’s footsteps (15 December 2017)

    Hillary scholar raises over $2,000 for the Himalayan Trust.

  • Top students put to the test (7 September 2017)

    From 300 wannabes, 24 students were chosen for the 2017 Top Student Awards – two from Waikato.

  • One weekend, two world champions (27 August 2017)

    Stacey Waaka and Morgan Haakma have reason to celebrate.

  • Big time shot for Waikato netballers (20 October 2016)

    Two University of Waikato netballers will get to play alongside the nation’s best at the end of this month.

  • Hillary scholar’s unfinished business in Nepal (15 August 2016)

    It was a life-changing trip to Nepal in 2015 that prompted Hillary scholar and track athlete Kristie Baillie to return for a second visit.

  • Waikato University Cello Student Wins National Concerto Competition (14 March 2016)

    University of Waikato cello student Sam Lucas has won the 2016 National Concerto Competition, held recently in Christchurch. Mr Lucas performed Bloch's Schelomo with the Christchurch Symphony Orchestra.

  • Hamiltonians score top university scholarship (2 March 2016)

    Former Sacred Heart Girls College student Erena Calder Hawkins is one of nine Hamilton locals to be awarded a top scholarship from the University of Waikato.

  • Huntly hero wins top Waikato scholarship (2 March 2016)

    Former Te Wharekura o Rākaumanga head boy and Dux Keihana Kingi-Takoko has been awarded a hefty scholarship to study at the University of Waikato.

  • Soprano and Rugby player receive Hillary medals (1 March 2016)

    Seasoned rugby player Adam Burn and soprano Blaire White have been awarded one of Waikato University’s most prestigious awards – the Sir Edmund Hillary Medal.

  • Braving ice and cold in the name of Sir Ed (1 March 2016)

    Four Hillary scholars went on the journey of a lifetime, trekking in high altitudes and enduring cold temperatures through Nepal’s Khumbu Valley.

  • Scholar’s dairy flick lands spot in top film festival (1 March 2016)

    A short film created by screen and media student and Hillary scholar Ashton Ledger was chosen for showcasing at this year’s Tropfest New Zealand – the world’s largest short film festival.

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