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Tauira

Past Tauira - Emma Winiata
Ko Tainui me Aotea nga Waka
Ko Tararua me Taranaki nga maunga
Ko Hokio me Waingongoro nga Awa
Ko Ngati Raukawa me Ngaruahine nga Iwi
Ko Ngati Pareraukawa me Ngati Haua nga Hapu
Ko Ngatokowaru me Okare ki uta nga Marae

Achievements post Ōtaki College
I studied towards a Bachelor of Law and Bachelor of Arts (majoring in Māori Studies) at Victoria University in Wellington. I am now a solicitor/consultant at Tuia Group in Wellington – a boutique law/business consulting firm that mainly works in the Māori Sector. I am very lucky and excited to be working in an environment where professional Māori are doing work for organisations to advance Māori economic and cultural development. Being a small organisation you tend to get chucked in the deep end – It is challenging at times but extremely rewarding.

Interests and Future Aspirations
My job is my passion. I enjoy working with Māori for Māori. I mentioned to the senior students at the Ōtaki College Senior achievement assembly that they should at least start thinking about career paths early (don’t have to decide on anything early). You spend at least a third of your life working, you might as well do something you enjoy. Not sure of my future aspirations yet. I suppose I would love to be an expert in my field and be known for my exceptional work and talent. Other than that, we’ll see where life takes me!! Probably back home to Ōtaki one day to have a family and ultimately bring my skill set and knowledge back home and work for my Iwi.

Tip to students
There are so many great opportunities out there for young Māori, especially given the speed at which Iwi are settling with the Crown. Settled Iwi have an obligation to their Iwi members to work in their best interests. Growing capability and capacity within each Iwi is usually the ultimate goal – growing the people. All students who affiliate to an Iwi are beneficiaries of that Iwi. Students should be tapping into that resource.


Past Tauira - Jordan Housiaux
Ko Tainui te waka
Ko Tararua te maunga
Ko Otaki te awa
Ko Ngati Toa / Te Atiawa te iwi
Ko Kaitangata te hapu
Ko Whakarongotai te marae
Ko John Housiaux toku koroua
Ko Maxine Housiaux toku kuia
Ko Robert Ropata toku koroua
Ko Lillian Ropata toku kuia
Ko Peter Housiaux toku papa
Ko Ann Marie Housiaux toku mama
Ko Joshua toku tuakana
Ko Jordan Housiaux taku ingoa

Like Josh (my older brother), I spent my entire intermediate and College years at Ōtaki College. In 2003 I started as a year 7 student, completing my 7 years at Ōtaki College in 2009. I hold many fond memories of my time at Ōtaki College and believe this time gave me many opportunities and options academically, culturally, sporting and socially. Like Josh, sport has always been a big part of my life and I enjoyed playing lots of different sports codes over my 7 years at the College, some of these sports were to a New Zealand level. I also enjoyed the academic challenges that I was offered and always strived to achieve in what ever I was applying myself to. Although I have some fantastic memories and experiences, some of the stand-out ones for me were; A Member of the NZ Colleges 2008 Youth to Everest Expedition doing volunteer work in Nepal with Kelsi Robertson and Paris Pidduck (also from Ōtaki College). Winning New Zealand Secondary School Titles at the New Zealand Secondary School Canoe Polo Champs. Being Selected as Head Girl of Ōtaki College in 2009.

Being part of the Student Council over the years and Head Girl, taught me invaluable life skills, i.e. motivating people, leading by example, patience, fairplay and mediation. Like Josh, making life long friends has also been a huge part of my time at College and is important in forming who we are going to be.

As the end of 2009 approached, the confidence I had gained from the College, community, friends and whanau helped me realise that there were lots of exciting and interesting things that I could be doing. I had decided that in 2010 I would attend Victoria University aiming for a Bachelor of Science majoring in Marine Biology & Statistics.

During my final year, the NZ Army came to the College and talked to students about ‘life in the Army”, so I decided I would give this a go and applied to become a Territorial Officer in the NZ Army, trials were held over a few weekends and were challenging both mentally and physically, each session was tough and those that were successful were invited back for the next training session. Eventually there was one final squad selection with 12 members picked from this to go through to Officer Training. I was accepted into the Army re-evaluated my decision and diverted this for a year as I was one of the youngest applicants and wanted to get a year of University Life under my belt before I took on a new challenge. In November of 2010 and after an exciting but full on year at Victoria University I received a letter from the Army reminding me of their acceptance of me into the Army. That same week, I also received a letter from the Ocean Research Centre at Mossel Bay in South Africa offering me a month long Internship studying great white sharks at their Research Centre. It was a very tough decision to make, but I decided to take the offer at the Ocean Research Centre and turn down the NZ Army offer. In January of 2011 I headed off to South Africa (apprehensive but excited), my month at the Research Centre involved taking genetic samples of great white sharks, tagging sharks for research, putting sharks into tonic, seal and dolphin surveys and working at the Mossel Bay Aquarium with other marine species. While in South Africa I was also able to do a cage dive with great white sharks, go on a Safari and jumped from the Worlds highest Bungy Jump. But the main thing that my trip achieved was that it reinforced to me that Marine Biology was what I wanted to study.

As part of my Statistics studies I was offered a part-time job working for “Te Kete Hauora” at the Ministry of Health analysing and compiling data on Māori Health, what I realise from this is that the statistics are pretty grim for Māori Health. I hope this is something that can only improve with education and knowledge.

My focus this year is to continue on with my studies, unfortunately during Semester 1 and due to timetable clashes I was unable to continue with my Māori Study papers, fortunately I am able to carry these on in Semester 2. Like Josh, I have not come across many Māori Students in my science and maths classes.

I am proud to have been a student of Ōtaki College and think the College community is a great cross section of New Zealand society, my time there has enabled me to move into the wider community with the confidence to associate with people from all walks of life.


Past Tauira - Joshua Housiaux

Ko Tainui te waka
Ko Tararua te maunga
Ko Otaki te awa
Ko Ngati Toa / Te Atiawa ooku iwi
Ko Kaitangata te hapu
Ko Whakarongotai te marae
Ko John Housiaux toku koroua
Ko Maxine Housiaux toku kuia
Ko Robert Ropata toku koroua
Ko Lillian Ropata toku kuia
Ko Peter Housiaux toku papa
Ko Ann Marie Housiaux toku mama
Ko Jordan toku teina
Ko Joshua Housiaux taku ingoa

I completed 7 years at Ōtaki College in 2006, having commenced at the college as a year 7 student back in 2000 and going through to year 13 in 2006. Ōtaki College (and Ōtaki in general) has a reputation for good sports teams, which was great as this kept me interested. In between my sporting and social activities whilst at Ōtaki college I attained NCEA Level 1,2 & 3 and gained University Entrance also. In 2006, my last year at Ōtaki College I was selected as Deputy Head which was a great honour and something I am very proud of.

In 2008 and after spending a year studying at Victoria University, I applied for and was successful in receiving an Engineering Cadetship from Stahlton Engineering Ltd, for the first year it was hands on work, learning the ropes of working for a large New Zealand engineering Company. Part of the Cadetship agreement was that I went on to study, so in 2009 I became a fulltime student again, studying for my "New Zealand Civil Engineering Diploma".

For the summer of 2010 & 2011, I decided I needed a change of scenery and headed off to Perth, I was lucky enough to pick up work doing soil samples for an International Mining Company who were investigating mining options around the world. Working with people from various parts of the world reinforced to me, that my decision to study Civil Engineering was a good one, in that I would be able to work in New Zealand and Internationally.

While I was in Perth I decided that I would continue my study and aim to graduate with a degree in Civil Engineering, this would mean a further 2 years of studying towards my Bachelor of Engineering Technology Majoring in Civil Engineering. Continuing on with my study over the next two years also gives me the opportunity to refocus on my Māori Studies, I am also studying for my certificate in Mata a ao Māori. Looking back at the past 2 years of my Civil Engineering Studies, I have seen a gap in the market, there have not been many Civil Engineering Māori Students in the Training Institutions that I have studied at, I believe that this is important when looking at development for the future of New Zealand.

During my 7 years at Ōtaki College I don't think I was fully appreciative of the Education (academically and socially) that I was gaining from my time at the college. I gained lots of valuable skills during my time at College and am excited about the future and realise that the path I am following has been formed in part by my time spent at Ōtaki College. I encourage all students to appreciate this time and look to utilise the opportunities given at Ōtaki College to further oneself.