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Nursing Māori graduates bring distinct skill set to the job

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Nursing Māori graduates bring distinct skill set to the job

Whitireia New Zealand will tomorrow hold a graduation ceremony for the last group of Bachelor of Nursing Māori students to finish in July, before the programme moves to a November end date from 2016.

The graduation is typically a festive and colourful event, and this year’s ceremony will be no different. Over 200 people are expected to be in attendance at the Porirua campus, including guest speaker Professor Whatarangi Winiata.

Whitireia is a leading provider of undergraduate and postgraduate health programmes, and is one of only two educational institutions to offer a Bachelor of Nursing Māori. The point of difference for this degree, which spans both the Health and Te Wānanga Māori faculties, is the use of Māori pedagogy that encapsulates and validates whānau, hapū and iwi ways of knowing. The programme draws on Māori and tauiwi bodies of knowledge, including the principles of kaitiakitanga, manaakitanga, pūkengatanga, rangātiratanga and whānaungātanga, in order to enhance ākonga learning.

The aim of the programme is to provide a qualification that prepares graduates to address the specific health needs of Māori. The distinct skill set required by Māori nurses is acknowledged and is reflected in the curriculum design, as well as the teaching, learning and support environment. Graduates able to work with equal competence in both cultures contribute significantly not only to Māori health but also to New Zealand's general health system.

"We support and develop excellence in our programmes," says Whitireia Faculty of Health Dean Dr Kathryn Holloway. "Our health programmes, including the Bachelor of Nursing Māori, have an exemplary record of delivering work-ready, in-demand graduates."

The Whitireia nursing programmes were developed in response to direct community need, and it is clear from the number of graduates now in the workforce that they have been a resounding success. Employers say they choose Whitireia nursing graduates because they are knowledgeable, well-grounded, approachable, and hard working.


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