Last week, an exciting new event took place here at the Park – the Tech Step Expo.
A unique one day interactive event, designed for ākonga (students) from Kura Kaupapa Māori in Te Tai Tokerau, to encourage them to explore the diverse opportunities available in the world of technology.
With over 180 students on site and a wealth of tech industry workshop facilitators, speakers and event hosts, the day was all about inspiring students, showcasing the cool possibilities in the tech universe, opportunities that are available right here locally.
Regan Haika from Tai Tokerau Trades Training said “The biggest thing that I think they get from this day is just having their mind and eyes opened to so many possibilities that are out there and just here in Te Tai Tokerau as well; you don’t need to move off to Auckland.”
To succeed in tech, students will likely need to go to university to study things like programming, data science, and software development. Haika said its important for kura kaupapa Māori to offer supportive classes, so that students could follow their tech dreams.
Roberta Pedro Ngapuhi - Ngati Hine, our Skills and Employment Coordinator here at the Park, pointed out that Māori students were underrepresented in the industry, “Because we are underrepresented as Māori in the technology fields, in the AI space, in the technology realm, I think it’s really important for our Māori and Pacific Island kura kids to be exposed to the possibilities.”
We were thrilled to see the park space filled with such a positive initiative focusing on the future. Tech Step and its key messaging will contribute to our regional future workforce aligning to the roles of tomorrow and future-proofing our tai tamariki.
With plans to expand the Tech Step Expo to other regions in 2024 we are excited to see how this vital initiative develops further.