Digital Marketing Program Sees First Cohort Graduate

The Te Mātātahi Scholarship Program is an eight-week course for rangatahi aged 18-25, designed to provide a comprehensive digital marketing curriculum, specifically for Maori, who wish to develop their skills in the industry.

“It’s important that we support young people like them, especially in the age of social media,” said Minister Willie Jackson, who was at the graduation ceremony this weekend.

“We need young people with a strong background, especially in tikanga Māori, to be supported and to tell our Maori stories,” he added.

The program is led by Whāriki – Maori Business Network and Meta, and is the first of its kind in Aotearoa. Whāriki Communications and Community Manager Beau Johns (Ngāti Kahu, Ngāpuhi) says the eight-week program was born out of a demand for Maori talent in the industry.

Te Mātātahi scholarship graduates take te ao Māori into the digital marketing space.

“So many businesses are operating in our network and what they are crying out for is Maori talent, and we wanted to provide that talent but in an authentically Maori way,” he says.

One of the graduates, Jayda Hopping (Ngāti Ranginui, Ngāi Te Rangi), says it’s important for Maori to be involved in the advertising process that involves te reo or mātauranga Māori.

“It’s about making sure that we bring rangatahi into these spaces and tell them in a way that we want to tell them and not in the way that big corporations want us to say it.”

Cathy W. Howerton