Toi Ki Tua is a summer internship program unlocking pathways to higher-skilled careers for Māori tertiary students from the Bay of Plenty region.

The program is tailored to those who have a strong connection to the Bay of Plenty through either whakapapa or residency. Its core purpose is to build a talented pool of Māori young professionals who can seize future job opportunities.

The program offers a unique opportunity for Māori tertiary students to boost their confidence, their networks, and gain valuable experience working alongside some of the Bay of Plenty’s finest employers. It enables participants to stay connected to their cultural roots while embarking on a journey of personal and professional growth. Additionally, the program allows employers to tap into the potential of this talented group of Māori tertiary students who are emerging as the future leaders of their fields.

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Programme Feedback

It’s always hard getting work experience and it’s been good to see the kiwifruit industry backing this. The programme provided a real great connection point for all involved. I hope this expands and continues into the future.

Anaru Timutimu

Chairman, Māori Kiwifruit Growers Inc

The programme came at the right time for Zespri, in that we are embarking on a journey of Māori immersion. It was an initiative that would add to our journey. Diversity, equity and inclusion is big on people’s agenda, but we're not prepared to do it half-pie. We want to be genuine, real, and deliberate. Māori are a key stakeholder group that we want to engage with, in a rich, and deliberate and powerful way. We have Māori in Zespri, but they are few and far between. We want to create an environment that will not only attract them, but also create an environment where we will seek them.

Edith Sykes

Chief People Officer, Zespri International

I’ve learnt that it’s important to be myself in different settings and to push my personal comfort zone to grow my confidence. That being Māori is a unique gift and allows me to bring new perspectives and opinions on things. That networking is valuable and the people and relationships I have made along the way have taught me so much and also opened me up to new opportunities.

Zoe Ngawaka

Bachelor of Social Science (Psychology & Human Development), University of Waikato

This programme is a great way to get into the corporate space, and the site tours are a great way to get insights and network with other people from a range of organisations as well. The internships are paid so if you are planning on working over the summer why not do it through an internship that promotes your professional and cultural growth.

Haisley Bell

Bachelor of Commerce (Economics & Finance), University of Auckland

Take the leap and apply - everyone is so encouraging and have placed people in companies where we have all thrived. Keep an open mind with no expectations. It's the perfect opportunity to develop with like-minded, inspiring and successful Māori leaders wanting to support you.

Julia Newman

Bachelors of Commerce (International Business) & Law, Otago University