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Discovery Scholarships Programme

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Discovery Scholarships Programme

30 March, 2021

Rachel Grant SCUBA diving at Tuhua Island ResizedImageWzI5MywzOTBd

Rachel Grant out in the sea being a kaitiaki and developing her skills observing.

Our inaugural Discovery Scholarship Programme for Māori and Pacific peoples in tertiary science launched in 2020. The programme is led by Principal Investigator Dr Pauline Harris, from Rongomaiwahine, Ngāti Rakaipaaka and Ngāti Kahungunu ki Wairoa, Senior Lecturer at Victoria University of Wellington, and is based on research looking at the barriers to Māori and Pacific students entering and staying in science. 15 Scholarships were awarded, paying up to $8k fees and up to $5k cash award, and were advertised widely, with emails to key groups, both directly and through our partners, as well as through social media and campaigns.

There were four awards categories available for 2020:

Te Kainga Rua Award - Second Chance Learner Award
This category is for mature students either returning to tertiary education after having some time away or those that are undertaking tertiary courses for the first time.

Piki Ake Award - Step It Up Award
This category is for students who are passionate about science but have found it challenging to achieve highly. The aim of this particular award is to help enthusiastic students reach their potential and step up into achieving.

Te Taumata Award - High Achiever Award
This category is for students who have excelled in their studies (B+ average or higher) and are looking toward continuing their study in the field.

Te Mātauranga Pūtaiao Award – Māori Science Award
This category is for students who are studying Mātauranga Māori Science and are looking toward continuing their study in the field.

The Scholarships were hugely over-subscribed, showing the urgent need for this kind of support. The programme is being continued for 2021, with the addition of a new award for those who have previously received a Discovery Scholarship and wish to continue with their studies.

The goal I’m striving towards is to become a Kaitiaki o te Moana - a guardian of the sea. I wish to share with others how I view the ocean, to inspire people about the hidden wonders.

Rachel Grant Te Taumata Award recipient Toi Ohomai Institute of Technology