Borrin Foundation – Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga Postgraduate Scholarship for Maryann Panoho
Maryann is pursuing a Masters of Indigenous Law and Policy at the University of Arizona, USA. Maryann wants to work towards ensuring Aotearoa is a safe place for all and that the law reflects that vision by taking a transformative approach to justice and change.
Borrin Foundation - Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga postgraduate scholarship
Maryann Panoho is from Ngāpuhi. She has had the privilege of being raised by several communities both in Aotearoa and internationally. She acknowledges her parents, who she says selflessly sent both her and her brother to boarding school in England from the ages of 10 and 11 to give them the best possible chance of succeeding in their lives. Upon returning she attended Epsom Girls Grammar School and finished her schooling at Kings College. Currently Maryann is finishing her undergraduate conjoint degrees at the University of Auckland studying towards a Bachelor of Arts majoring in Politics and International Relations and a Bachelor of Laws. Maryann says that everything she is today, is a testament to the communities that have raised her, and she has always had a desire to give back in any way she can which she believes will help other people and communities worldwide. Throughout Maryann’s time at University, she gave back to her Māori legal community by being the Māori Academic Programmes first Head Tutor in the law faculty and the Jurisprudence Tutor. Now, she is currently working at Wackrow Panoho and Associates as a law clerk. It is a firm that specialises in iwi, hapū, whānau, and community organisation legal issues. Maryann says, “it took almost 5 years of my degree to understand my place within the law and now I know my pathway for the future, one that is based on the groundwork our tīpuna placed for us in the past, that will forever guide me.”
What Maryann is studying
This scholarship means Maryann can work towards fulfilling her goals for a greater Aotearoa by firstly, helping her achieve a Master’s degree and then secondly, a Doctorate degree in Indigenous Law and Policy at the University of Arizona. Maryann is motivated to study in the area of Indigenous Law because she wants to ensure Aotearoa is a safe place for all and that the law reflects that vision by taking a transformative approach to justice and change.
Maryann says, “Indigenous experiences of colonisation are echoed and like indigenous peoples internationally, Māori are struggling, our people are impoverished and disproportionately represent every negative statistic from prison populations, through the health system, mental health, to the housing crisis.”
Finally, Maryann wants more Māori to flourish in spaces predominately occupied by Pākeha. Maryann says, “It is very clear that the status quo is failing Māori and if it was going to work it would have by now so I hope my voice can add to the kaupapa in changing Aotearoa for the betterment of all of us.”
“I recognise and feel the weight of my people on my shoulders. We are entering a time of change in Aotearoa I can feel it, so I want to use my experiences to be a voice in Aotearoa for positive change and justice so that Māori are finally free in our own lands.”
– Maryann Panoho