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July 18, 2011 | by  | in Features |
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Ngā Rangahautira

Ngā Rangahautira, the Maori Law Students Society, has been growing in leaps and bounds. Founded in the 1980’s by Moana Jackson and many other notable Maori legal personalities, the group has been providing student support to future Maori lawyers studying at Victoria’s Law School. Run entirely by students, Ngā Rangahautira has been an essential part of many students’ experience of law school life.

Every year brings new challenges and many exciting events. 2010 was a hugely important year for Ngā Rangahautira as the national Te Hunga Roia Maori o Aotearoa Maori Law Society Conference was held in Wellington late last year. Being the hosting Law School, this amazing event bought students and practitioners from all over the country together to share experiences and take home words of advice and legal wisdom from many important figures from our legal profession. Held annually since 1988, the conference is the highlight of the year for Maori lawyers and students alike. The first annual Maori Law Awards were also held at Te Papa during the conference and saw many alumni from Victoria receiving praise and awards for their important work.

Two weeks ago the 2011 conference was held in Hamilton and as usual, Nga Rangahautira sent a keen contingent to join the group. As usual, amazing speakers, inspirational lawyers and extremely talented students were bought together to meet, greet and learn from each other. Nga Rangahautira look forward to this event each and every year and will continue to attend and proudly represent out university for many years to come.

This year, Phoebe Monk and Shaun Raumati are Tumuaki Wahine, and Tumuaki Tane. They head a keen and enthusiastic executive group elected at the annual Nga Rangahautira AGM which was held earlier this year. It is a pleasure to see students from all year groups come together and volunteer to be part of the executive team. This the executive are holding a sports day, Te Wiki O Te Reo Maori event, a pre-law ball social gathering, various BYO dinners and BBQ’s to promote Nga Rangahautira’s presence at our university and to encourage a continued involvement in kaupapa Maori.

The Law library now has a new room exclusively for the use of Maori and Pasifika students which will include a collection of reference materials, a projector screen and will be a space for Maori students to use for group discussion and tutorials.

Nga Rangahautira focus on enhancing the understanding of law amongst Maori students, and continue to provide social, academic, cultural and political activities. Extra tutorials and study sessions are provided for Maori students and encourage full understanding of the law whilst protecting the importance of tikanga Maori. Nga Ranghautira is a group open to students from all stages of their law degrees and helps to bridge the gap between Maori lawyers in the community, and Maori students in study.

We hope to meet many more students as the year goes on, and all students involved are committed to making law school a fun, warm and inclusive place for Maori students.

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Salient is a magazine. Salient is a website. Salient is an institution founded in 1938 to cater to the whim and fancy of students of Victoria University. We are partly funded by VUWSA and partly by gold bullion that was discovered under a pile of old Salients from the 40's. Salient welcomes your participation in debate on all the issues that we present to you, and if you're a student of Victoria University then you're more than welcome to drop in and have tea and scones with the contributors of this little rag in our little hideaway that overlooks Wellington.

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