Seelye Scholar keen to help Māori and Pacific youth
12 October 2021
Malia Fuamatu says she spent the first four years of high school struggling with motivation and came close to becoming “another dropout statistic”.
In Year 13, when she eventually figured out what she wanted to do, her pastoral record was so “colourful” that she thought it would be difficult to find a teacher willing to endorse her application for any scholarship.
Fortunately, the deputy principal at her school, McAuley High School in Otahuhu, believed in her and endorsed her application for a Ralph and Eve Seelye Undergraduate Scholarship.
Now successfully immersed in her fourth year of studying for conjoint degrees in Law and Arts, Malia is deeply grateful for the scholarship, for the turning point that it created in her life and the resources that it provides so that she can accomplish her goals.
“Because of this support, my parents and grandparents did not have to spend nights worrying about a laptop for me that I knew they could not afford. My mum doesn’t worry about my expensive textbooks, or my stationery or even my travel fees to get to university each day.”
She is determined to use the opportunity to help others in the future.
“It has motivated me to do better, to be better for our youth, especially our Māori and Pacific youth, who face adversity and struggle in an education system that was not made for them.
“The goal will always be to give back and to reach a hand back to help others up. Like the Ralph and Eve Charitable Trust has done and continues to do, I too am on my way to helping my community in any capacity that I can.”
Each year up to ten Year 13 students are awarded Ralph and Eve Seelye Undergraduate Scholarships, which provide funding of up to $5,000 per year for the duration of a first undergraduate degree.
Helen Borne | Communications Manager
Alumni Relations and Development