University of Waikato Hillary Scholar chasing league dream

5 April 2012

Hamiora Mihaka

Warrior: Waikato University Sir Edmund Hillary scholar Hamiora Mihaka is chasing his dream to play for the New Zealand Warriors.

University of Waikato Sir Edmund Hillary scholar Hamiora Mihaka is looking forward to balancing academia and sport in his first year at university.

Hamiora, 17, from Rotorua, is a New Zealand Warriors junior development player and will have to balance travelling to Auckland to train with studying at Waikato as he works towards a mechanical engineering degree.

Rugby league the sport for Mihaka

“My interest in rugby league started when I moved up to Auckland to attend school, which was especially for league. I had always loved rugby from a young age but eventually saw rugby league as the sport for me,” says Hamiora.

“I’ve been involved with the Warriors development squad for around a year and this involves going to Auckland a couple of times a year to take part in league-specific skills development training and being reviewed on how I’ve played throughout the season."

Looking to build on record of success

The former St Paul's College second-rower is hoping to continue the success he had at high school when St Paul's won the National Secondary Schools Rugby League Tournament in 2009.

"On top of this I play in the Taniwharau Prems in the Hamilton competition so it keeps me quite busy.

Opportunities for success drew scholar to Waikato

“I choose to study mechanical engineering at Waikato because it’s closer to home and I believe that I have more of an opportunity to succeed here both academically and in sport.”

Sir Edmund Hillary Scholarships are the University of Waikato’s most prestigious scholarships and are awarded to students who are high academic achievers who are also achieving in the arts or sport. Scholars have their course fees covered, receive specialist coaching and mentoring and take part in personal development and leadership programmes.

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