WelCom December 2016:
On Saturday 30 September, the World Indigenous Nations University (WINU) conferred three honorary Doctorates at Te Wānanga o Raukawa, Ōtaki. Among the recipients was Ōtaki whānau member, Oriwia Raureti (Ngati Raukawa), who was awarded an honorary Doctorate of Letters.
Oriwia is a long-serving and committed advocate for Māori Education and a valued and passionate member and leader of education initiatives in the Ōtaki community. She is a distinguished educator in her own right who over many years has not only sought to advance her own educational aspirations and research reputation but has encouraged in her people the will to succeed in education.
Oriwia follows a line of teachers in her late mother and sister and is a leader in promoting te reo Māori and Māori excellence in research and education. She is a leader in Māori management and is currently the Executive Director of Operations at Te Wānanga. She is also deeply committed to her Catholic Church at Pukekaraka, Ōtaki.
The other recipients were Wiremu Kaa, Patricia Grace. Wiremu Kaa (Ngāti Porou) was recognised for his contribution as a native Māori speaker and his teaching and influence on Māori studies. Patricia Grace (Ngāti Toa) was recognised because of her literary accomplishments and her writing around Māori themes.
The awarding of the doctorates recognises a special contribution to community and education by various indigenous people in the world. The graduation took place before family and friends and people from Alaska to Australia and the Pacific.
Te Wānanga o Raukawa is a Māori University, or wānanga, situated at Ōtaki. Formally established in 1981 it caters for about 1300 students both on line and at the university.
A coalition of three local iwi (Ngāti Toa, Te Ati Awa and Ngāti Raukawa) te Wānanga o Raukawa has as its basic aim excellence in higher education delivered with respect for traditional Māori learning.
While embracing use of te reo Māori and development of the student’s home marae and tradition, the university utilises contemporary educational content.
WINU is a world network for Indigenous higher education. Founded on and operating within the sovereignty of indigenous peoples, its programme incorporates both western and cultural knowledge.