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September 25, 2011 | by  | in Opinion |
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Ngāi Tauira – Rep’n it up: From the outside-in

Opinions can become strong voices. At times they may hurt, encourage, contradict or challenge people to think. It is a voice of a person that wishes to share their insight on a particular topic. But what happens when the topic itself is opinion? You go out and find someone else’s voice. The article this week will offer a unique perspective in the sense that the viewpoint and opinion expressed is one that does not attend University, but rather one that is from the outside looking in.

As a Māori girl coming from a small town, I know what people’s expectations are like. For Pākehā their opinion is usually the same and there always seems to be a one sided-story. If two are present however, one will always lose out. Sometimes what is needed is a third-party perspective. So after moving to the big city I noticed how many people just need that one chance to make their big break.

These days it is like you need a degree to pump your gas. Looking at other Māori who have their degrees, bachelors, certificates or diplomas, I am very proud to say that I am Māori. Those who don’t but are trying their best to make life easier for their families just deserve that one chance to show people what they are made of. I don’t attend University, but looking in at those who do, makes me very proud.

After walking down one of the busiest streets in Wellington, I notice how many Māori there were walking in business suits or uniforms. I think about the times we have been put down or peoples’ opinions have made us look like failures. But then when I look at small towns (for example where I come from), I see on the news girls fighting and their fathers cheering them on, gang fights, or burglers. I don’t think its all Māori just those that need a hand or advice in today’s society. A lot of people say: don’t move to this town the people there are mean, and the teenagers are useless. Well I have to say, it’s not the town, it’s the people in it, and the people in it need help.

Every time I go home someone asks me: how is Uni? I usually say, I don’t go to University. Instantly their reply is: well at least you’re out there making your place in the world. It feels good to know that I have the support as a Māori girl without a degree living in the Capital. I’m glad that everyone knows I don’t go to University, because even though I don’t attend, it pursuits others to get out there and make a mark on the world.

You don’t have to have a piece of paper to tell you that you are good at something (it helps to have one if you are looking into a specific career however), but you just have to show yourself that you are indeed special, regardless of the circumstances. So get up and make your place in the world. It doesn’t matter where you come from or what your background is. It’s all about life and living it to the fullest.

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