Ngāti Hine, Ngāpuhi, Ngāti Porou
Maria Ngawati is a Māmā and has worked across all parts of the Tertiary education sector for the majority of her career. She is a current PhD candidate, holds a Masters degree in Health Science and trained as a Physiotherapist, so has a keen interest in Health Sciences and Whānau wellbeing.
Her upbringing was in West Auckland, in a time where Māori were becoming more vocal in all areas of Māori advancement, and her and her siblings are strongly rooted in their Ngāti Hinetanga. This gives Maria a deep appreciation of the experience of being an urban Māori with obligations back to her many Hapū, and she seeks to reconnect and revitalise herself and rangatahi in particular back to Māoritanga through the vehicles of education, sport, kapahaka and Te Reo.
Maria’s main area of academic study is focused on the barriers that exist for Māori through New Zealand’s higher education system, and the potential of Indigenous ways of knowing in changing our global landscape.
She currently resides in Rotorua with her whānau