Rangatahi O Te Moana

By Connor leov, Year 11 | Posted: Thursday September 21, 2017

On Sunday the 27th of August, I was lucky enough to go to Dunedin and partake in Rangatahi O Te Moana. This programme was focused on trying to get students of Maori descent into the Health Sciences at Otago University. Our task for the programme was to come up with a question that incorporated the thing our group was testing and giving a presentation in front of all the parents and mentors on Thursday afternoon.

Most of my time spent at Dunedin was largely focused around the NZ Marine Studies Centre out at Portobello, and on Quarantine Island in the middle of Otago Harbour.

On Sunday we spent our time getting organised into groups and were told what projects we would be doing. I was in the Physical Oceanography group. We had to take measurements of physical elements in the water, for example, the Ph, salinity and temperature. We decided to test whether the quality of the water decreased as we got close to human population.

On Monday we spent 8.5 hours out on the Otago University’s Research Vessel, the Polaris II. Over this time we were collecting seven different attributes from eight different locations outside the Otago Harbor, these locations were getting consistently closer to Saint Kilda or “human population”. We then spent 1.5 hours at the Marine Studies Centre collating our data and putting it on a spreadsheet. From here we went to Quarantine Island where we were staying for all but Wednesday night.

On Tuesday we went back out on the Polaris II for another 4 hours, this time in the Harbour collecting the same seven attributes at six more locations again getting closer to “human population”. We then spent the whole afternoon at the Marine Studies Centre collating data, starting our powerpoint and our poster. Then back to Quarantine Island for the night.

Wednesday was spent entirely at the Marine Studies Centre working on the powerpoint and poster. We also had to figure out who was going to say what during our presentation. At 5 o'clock that night we had basically finished our poster and powerpoint, we just needed to practice presenting it, but we had Thursday morning for that. We then left the Marine Studies Centre and drove down to Otakou Marae where we stayed Wednesday night.

On Thursday we spent the morning rushing to get everything organised for our presentation. We also had to do a practice presentation in front of all the students to get criticism and see if we were on the right track. Before we knew it the parents had arrived and it was lunch time, then we had our presentation. Luckily our groups went flawlessly and we had no problems at all.