Māori and Pacific University students unite against racism

By Heeni Brown

Over 40 Maori and Pacific University of Auckland students were interviewed regarding the everyday colonialism and racism they face while at university.

It's only been five days since the "I, Too Am Auckland" campaign was launched and already its gaining traction online with nearly 10,000 Youtube views.

"You're only here because you're Māori and Pacific and you qualified for the Tertiary Admission scheme" - an alternative admission scheme for applicants of Māori and Pacific ancestry into tertiary programmes.

These are just some of the racist remarks lecturer David Mayeda says Māori and Pacific students face while being here at the University of Auckland.

"Learning to cope with every day racism in kind of modern forms of colonialism was something that helped them succeed in higher education," says Mayeda.

Te Rarawa and Ngāti Kahu descendant Chloe Manga who is in her final year of studying a Bachelors in Law and Arts says she joined the "I, Too Am Auckland" campaign because it is important to address what she says is personal and institutional racism at the University of Auckland.

"It's more about raising awareness about racism here at the University for Māori and Pacific students and also talking to non-Māori and Pacific about what they can do to benefit our people and for our future," says Manga.

Senior reporter Heeni Brown will have more on the issue on Te Kāea 5:30pm