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Christchurch educator : an 'extraordinary Māori talent'

Monday, 27 June 2016 3:57pm

Suzanne Pitama - news bannerA Christchurch educator and researcher was one of the 'extraordinary Māori talents' honoured in the inaugural Matariki Awards.

Associate Professor Suzanne Pitama is the director of University of Otago, Christchurch’s Māori /Indigenous Health Institute (MIHI).

She was a finalist in the Te Ururangi Award for Education section of the new awards.  The awards were presented by Māori Television and Te Puni Kōkiri, and recognise high achieving Māori cross a broad range of fields.

Award recognises Otago's indigenous health excellence

Associate Professor Pitama says being a finalist is an acknowledgment of the collective work of the MIHI team – in the design, implementation and evaluation of an indigenous health curriculum. It is also an acknowledgement of the Otago Medical School providing space for indigenous health curriculum, she says.

“I’m grateful that such accolades are being given to the MIHI team and the Otago Medical School. I also think being nominated in the same category of one of my mentor's and aspirational role models Professor Linda Tuhiwai Smith is humbling.”

The other two finalists in the Education section were Waikato University Professor and Pro-Vice Chancellor Māori Linda Tuhiwai Smith and Melbourne University Professor Elizabeth McKinley. Professor Linda Tuhiwai won the award.