'I’m gaining a really broad range of skills which will help me in all parts of life....'
(Te Āti Haunui-a-Pāpārangi)
Grace’s unique double degree studies give her the opportunity to discover more about the earth and her Māori heritage.
‘I have always had a passion for the natural world and so I really wanted to pursue Science as a degree, and I chose to study a double degree in Arts to gain a wider range of knowledge and all-round skills,’ she says.
Coming from Wellington, Grace was particularly motivated by the prospect of exploring the South Island for her science studies, and enrolled at UC with an Undergraduate Entrance Scholarship.
‘I enjoy the mixture of courses I get to take. I feel that I’m gaining a really broad range of skills which will help me in all parts of life. I have a passion for Te Reo Māori and would really like to learn to speak it fluently. I also really enjoy doing practical work such as lab research and field trips.
‘I would love to find a work area which uses my science skills as well as my reo Māori skills.’
Grace’s primary goal for her overall university experience was to be involved in the student community as much as possible.
From her first year staying at Rochester and Rutherford Hall, taking part in the Emerging Leaders Development Scholarship programme with leadership training and projects, and becoming a Tuakana Māori Student Mentor, Grace has definitely made the most of being at uni.
‘I really enjoyed the community vibe of UC,’ she says. ‘As a tuakana I mentor other Māori students, tutoring them in courses I have previously done, and helping them with general aspects of student life. My mentoring programme is run through the Māori Development Team so I have a good relationship with them. They are super awesome and genuinely care about all their students.
‘The club culture at UC also makes it really easy to find likeminded people. Volunteering is definitely a passion of mine, and I’m on the executive team for the Student Volunteer Army, which was one of the goals I had in coming to UC. They are an awesome group of people and have opened me up to a lot of opportunities outside of uni.’
She encourages other students to get amongst the support and social services on campus, and to look into combining all their interests into a double degree.
‘Utilise teachers and career advisors; they have plenty of experience and will be able to help you find a path which suits you best. If you have a passion for learning and are willing to put in the work at uni, I say go for it!’