The community of people connected through Wakatū education programmes and scholarships has a new name - Te Hunga Pānuku. The new name, which was developed in consultation with kaumatua Rore Stafford, has a broad meaning of a group of people moving up and forward.

“For some time we have been calling the group of people who have participated in one of Wakatū Incorporation’s education programmes, training, scholarships, wānanga or one-off projects, our alumni,” Rōpata Taylor, General Manager, Manaaki, says.

“The word ‘alumni’ is often used in the context of people who have graduated from academic institutions such as universities.  Uncle Rore encouraged us to find a name for this group that better reflects the kaupapa of the group, and of Wakatū.”

“We are an intergenerational organisation, and on behalf of our families, we invest in the next generation through a range of programmes to keep developing the capability of our whānau. Through our programmes and Te Hunga Pānuku we are helping to grow leaders in business, politics, science and technology, the arts, culture, te reo and tikanga who will have a direct input into the success of our organisation. It is one of the ways we are helping to keep the next generation connected with their cultural identity, whakapapa and tikanga,” Rōpata says.

Through Te Hunga Pānuku we will continue provide opportunities for our next generation of families to connect with Wakatū and each other, and to contribute to the future of Wakatū.