Whariki - Māori weaving.

Whakapiki Ake Early Exposure

The Whakapiki Ake Early Exposure program is a pivotal initiative designed to inspire and support Māori rangatahi (youth) in years 9–11 to explore the possibilities within health sciences. It offers various interactive experiences, from university preparation to understanding the health career landscape. Key elements include encouraging relationships with career advisors and kura kaupapa Māori to provide culturally grounded education and guidance. The program aims to promote rangatahi to pursue health careers, thus addressing health workforce inequities and empowering the community.

Students participating in Early Exposure for health careers

Academic Foundations for Future Health Leaders

The Whakapiki Ake Early Exposure program opens doors for Māori rangatahi to the world of health sciences, setting them on an exciting path toward vital and fulfilling careers. By encouraging high school students to focus on key academic subjects, the program ensures they are well-prepared for university studies in health-related fields. Our proactive educational approach is supplemented by a strong foundation in Māori cultural values, offering students the knowledge they need and a sense of purpose and connection to their community.

Growing Community Connections in Health Education

Central to the success of Whakapiki Ake Early Exposure is the involvement of whānau and the wider community. The program’s activities are designed to include family participation, reinforcing the support network for our students. It’s a holistic strategy that goes beyond academic success, interweaving together the aspirations of our youth with the fabric of Māori identity. As they navigate the academic world, our students are empowered to become the future healthcare leaders our community needs, grounded in the strength of their cultural heritage.

Students inside University of Auckland Lecture theaters during a workshop in our COACH Programme
Whakapiki Ake students participating in a Early Exposure Workshop for Māori tikanga.

Early Exposure Testimonials

“Helped me understand who i am and what I can do”. – Year 9 from Katikati College.

“Helped me realise I need to get my head in the game. To go out there and find it. To make me think about what I’m going to do and where I’m headed and how to get there.” – Year 11 from Nga Taiatea Wharekrua.

“Participating in this program was a game-changer for me. It opened my eyes to the different careers in the health sector. I feel much more confident about my future career path.” – Year 11 from James Cook High School.

“I learnt something new and have a solid idea on my career path. “ – Year 10 from Trident High School.

“Whakapiki Ake helped me think about myself and why i come to school, this also helped me think outside the box. “ – Te Puke High School