Ten Pacific Island students in New Zealand have just received prestigious scholarships in recognition of their academic achievements.
The Kupe Scholarship, awarded by the Education Ministry, aims to encourage more Pacific students into teaching.
Recent government figures showed a twenty percent rise in Pasifika students leaving school with a secondary school qualification over the last eight years.
The figures also showed more Pacific people were now studying at tertiary level.
One of the recipients of a Kupe, Moana Toleafoa, said she hoped to encourage others to break the mould.
"Especially us Polynesians we have that stereotyped mind where we think ' I'm just going to go half way because I'm brown'. Don't think about the colour of your skin or what your culture is. Just go for it," Moana Toleafoa said.