Tēnā koutou katoa e ngā tauira o Te Whare Wānanga,
On Wednesday 6 September, Te Roopū Māori sent 29 tauira to represent the University of Otago at Te Huinga Tauira o Te Mana Akonga. Te Huinga Tauira is the annual National Māori Tertiary Students’ conference. This year Huinga Tauira was hosted by Ngā Tauira Māori o Te Whare Wānanga o Tāmaki-makau-rau (University of Auckland Māori Students’ Association).
Having arrived a day early, Te Roopū Māori was the first roopū to arrive. Ngā Tauira Māori accommodated Te Roopū Māori in their student common room. It was a great opportunity for Te Roopū Māori to get to know the hosting roopū and catch-up with friends from previous Huinga Tauira.
On Thursday, the pōwhiri was held at Waipapa Marae. It was a spectacular pōwhiri. Ngā Tauira Māori did an amazing job welcoming all of the roopū onto their marae. The whaikōrero and waiata that followed were thoughtful, humorous and well executed.
The following days contained several events, such as kapahaka, manu kōrero and workshops. There were five workshops for tauira to attend: Waka Hourua, Mau Rakau, a historical tour of Takaparawhau, TED Talks and Hawaiki TU.
Unfortunately, due to the weather, the sports day was cancelled. This gave everyone the opportunity to explore Auckland.
Te Huinga Tauira concluded with a formal dinner held at Eden Park. The venue was amazing and the kai was even better! It was a perfect event to finish up Huinga Tauira. Awards were given out for kapahaka (which Te Wairoa o Te Whare Wānanga o Waikato won), manu kōrero (Ngai Tauira o Te Whare Wānanga o te Ūpoko o te Ika a Māui won the English and Te Aratoki o Te Whare Wānanga o Waitaha won the Māori) and the supreme award ‘Ngā Uara o te Huinga Tauira’, which is given to the roopū which best displayed tikanga and kaupapa Māori, was won by Titahi ki Tua o Te Wānanga Aronui o Tāmaki Makau Rau.
It was an awesome time in Auckland and Te Roopū Māori cannot wait to host this event in 2019.
Nō reira, ngā mihi ki a koutou katoa!