An intercultural indigenous exchange has seen Te Wānanga o Aotearoa kaimahi visiting two universities in Chile.
The invitation was extended to Bachelor of Social Work kaiako Norma Rosales-Anderson, along with Warren Manuel, Bianca Hetaraka and kaiārahi Shirley Ikkala.
The visit will see them involved in a series of symposiums looking at tertiary indigenous education.
Norma, who is from Argentina, established strong academic connections in South America last year while researching her PhD on national and international indigenous tertiary education organisations.
"My journey involved rangahau in Aotearoa, Chile and Argentina,” says the doctoral candidate.
"This time last year I was looking at other models, for interchange of ideas, theories and models at the Universidad de la Frotera i Temuco Chile."
As part of her koha to the university, she presented a lecture to some of the staff’s indigenous Mapuche people.
She was then approached to participate in the symposium and aims to complete her theses next year.
"Mainly it’s dialogue for us, between the university, with what we're doing and opportunities for future collaboration," says Norma.
Further academic relationships were developed when Dr Mario Carvajal Castillo from Chile's Universidad Acaqdemica de Humanismo Crisstiano visited TWoA in June.
He has invited the roopu to Santiago to share their academic experiences as part of a lecture series for researchers and artists.
The lectures aim to show the tertiary organisation’s commitment to social transformation.
Kaiārahi for the TWOA Social Work programme, Shirely Ikkala, says she is excited about the prospect of developing her own relationships with other academics and looks forward to passing on her own findings.
"In particular, I will be presenting nga Takepū as a bicultural framework within our program," she says.
"Te Wānanga o Aotearoa uses a principled approached in its social work education to enhance tauira knowledge both in theory and practice to ensure it is connected with tangata whenua," she says.
As well as explaining these takepū concepts of Kaitiakitanga, Āhurutanga, Koha and Mauri Ora, over the next 10 days the roopu says it looks forward to learning more about their cultures too.
"This a great opportunity to share with others internationally, the work we do."