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Published: 2013-07-31 00:00:00

The two winners of this year’s Waikato Regional Council - Dame Te Atairangikaahu Scholarships are both women who are studying law and who take an active role in volunteer community work.

The awards were presented today to Waikato University students Rebecca Marriott ($2000) and Saska Hayes ($1500) by the Māori king’s son Whatumoana Te Aa at Tūrangawaewae House in Ngāruawāhia.

The scholarships, funded by Waikato Regional Council in association with the university, acknowledge the importance of education that encourages Maori leaders.

Rebecca, lives in Hamilton and is of Ngāti Māhuta and Ngāti Paoa descent. She is a mother of five who is close to completing her BA in Māori and is in her second year of law. Rebecca has recently been appointed to the Melville Primary School Board and is keen to encourage Māori parents to be more involved with their children’s education. Along with her daughters, she runs the local walking school bus.

Saska lives in Pirongia and is of Raukawa and Ngāti Awa descent. In her second year of law and media studies, Saska has a volunteer role with local and international community groups. This year she will travel to Cambodia to assist with a community development project. Saska also runs a bee keeping business with her partner and whānau at Pirongia.