16 Aug 2012

Maori postgraduate students receive inaugural scholarship

6:59 am on 16 August 2012

Three Maori postgraduate students are among 120 beneficiaries of a generous fund aimed at supporting young Maori in their educational endeavours.

The Rose Hellaby Awards Postgraduate Maori Scholarships were formally created by the Guardian Trust in conjunction with the Maori Education Trust in 2010 to support outstanding Maori students undertaking Masters, and PhD studies.

Miriama Ketu-McKenzie, 28, of Ngati Raukawa descent, who is completing a doctorate in clinical psychology at Massey University is the recipient of a $30,000 fund.

She says her whanau is terribly proud of her and she wants to set an example for other rangatahi that diligence really does pay off.

Miss Ketu-McKenzie says she is the first one in her family to complete university studies, and it's been a bit overwhelming for them.

She says it is good for young pupils coming up to the end of their schooling to see that if you carry on there are rewards at the end of it.

Miss Ketu-McKenzie wants to return home at the end of her studies and set up a mental health clinic in Horowhenua.

The other postgraduate students are Jessica Templeton of Waikato-Tainui descent, and Lewis Neihana Tait Jones of Ngati Maniapoto, both of whom receive a $15,000 scholarship.

Ms Templeton is working towards her Masters in Engineering Management at the University of Canterbury.

She says her whanau has always been behind her studies, and she wants to make her mark on what she describes as a male dominated industry, and is determined to be one of the most influential Maori leaders in her field.

Lewis Neihana Tait Jones is using his scholarship towards his research of body dissatisfaction among young males involved in weight training, and is completing a postgraduate diploma in clinical psychology and a Masters in psychology at the University of Waikato.

All three students will receive their awards in Auckland on Thursday afternoon.