Tag Archives: UC community

It’s UC’s birth-week, let’s celebrate our legend Dame Margaret Mahy

This Tuesday 16 June marked 147 years of UC history. To celebrate our Foundation Day, we’re spending this week reflecting on the triumphs of some of our legends.

New Zealand’s most celebrated children’s author of more than 120 titles.

After graduating from Canterbury University College in 1955, Margaret published her early stories in the NZ Department of Education School Journal.

Her first book, A Lion in the Meadow, was published in 1969 while working as a Librarian in the Canterbury Public Library. She produced over 100 picture books, 40 novels and 20 collections of short stories. Many of her works won medals and awards, and have been translated into a host of languages around the world. Some of her best known books include:

  • A lion in the meadow (1969)
  • The Dragon of an ordinary family (1969)
  • The man whose mother was a pirate (1972)
  • The Haunting (1982)
  • The Changeover (1984)
  • The catalogue of the Universe (1985)
  • The Moon and Farmer McPhee (2010)

In 1993, she was appointed to the Order of New Zealand, the highest of the country’s honours, for her lasting contribution to children’s literature.

Interested to learn more? Check out the rest of our legends here>

It’s UC’s birth-week, let’s celebrate our legend Elsie Locke

This Tuesday 16 June marked 147 years of UC history. To celebrate our Foundation Day, we’re spending this week reflecting on the triumphs of some of our legends.

A woman well ahead of her time – a renowned activist in the peace and feminist movements in New Zealand.

A woman well ahead of her time, Elsie Locke was an ardent campaigner for birth control, women’s rights, nuclear disarmament, social justice and the environment long before these causes became popular.

A member of the Communist Party from 1932-1956, she came to the attention of the New Zealand Security Intelligence Service at the same time as she raised her four children and fought vigorously to improve the world around her. Her essay Looking for Answers, which won the Katherine Mansfield Memorial Award, describes these turbulent times.

She was a prolific writer, particularly of children’s books, and contributed to a great number of publications for schools including the New Zealand School Journal and a series of historical books that educated Aotearoa New Zealand children about their social history. She studied te reo Māori and incorporated biculturalism as a central feature in her writing long before it became fashionable.

In 1987, Elsie was awarded an Hon Doc Litt by UC for her remarkable contribution to Aotearoa New Zealand society, and the building that houses the English Department at the University is named for her.

Interested to learn more? Check out the rest of our legends here>

IT’S UC’S 147TH BIRTHDAY! LET’S CELEBRATE OUR LEGEND TĀ APIRANA NGATA

Today marks 147 years of UC history. As we celebrate our Foundation Day, we’re spending this week reflecting on the triumphs of some of our legends.

“E tipu, e rea, mō ngā rā o tō ao.
Ko tō ringa ki ngā rāakau a te Pākehā, hei ora mō te tinana.
Ko tō ngākau ki ngā taonga a ō tīpuna Māori, hei tikitiki mō tō māhunga.
Ko tō wairua ki tō Atua, nāna nei ngā mea katoa.”

Born into the Ngāti Porou iwi, Tā Apirana Ngata’s early years were strongly influenced by his father Paratene, and his great-uncle Rapata, who imbued him with a strong sense of loyalty to the Crown. As native speakers of te reo Māori, they both insisted he also learnt Pākehā knowledge and skills as they believed this could help him to improve life and conditions for the Māori people.

At Te Aute College, Ngata learnt the classics, was prepared for matriculation, university and the professions – and, along with all Māori students, was strongly encouraged to have pride in Māori and instilled with the mission of saving their people from social disintegration.

By 1893, when he graduated from UC with a BA in political science, followed by an MA and an LLB in 1896, Ngata was the first Māori to graduate from any University in New Zealand. He then dedicated his life to reforming the social and economic conditions of the Māori people.

Through his life, he became a renowned leader, land reformer and politician. Elected as a member of Parliament in 1905, he remained until 1943. As Minister of Māori Affairs, his Māori Land Development Scheme, inaugurated in 1931, was one of the greatest achievements of his Parliamentary career.

In 1949 Apirana Ngata wrote in the autograph book of schoolgirl, Rangi Bennett,

“E tipu, e rea, mō ngā rā o tō ao. Ko tō ringa ki ngā rāakau a te Pākehā, hei ora mō te tinana. Ko tō ngākau ki ngā taonga a ō tīpuna Māori, hei tikitiki mō tō māhunga. Ko tō wairua ki tō Atua, nāna nei ngā mea katoa.”

“Thrive and grow for the days destined for you.  Your hands to the tools of the Pākehā, to provide physical sustenance.  Your heart to the treasures of your ancestors as adornments for your head. Your soul to God to whom all things belong.” This became much quoted as a vision for Māori youth.

Ngata was knighted in 1927 in recognition of his services to Māori communities and for his efforts as Chief Recruiting Officer during the First World War. Throughout his life, he contributed profoundly to the revival of the Māori race spiritually, culturally, and economically.

New Zealand paid tribute to this remarkable man in 1999 by embedding his portrait on the New Zealand $50 note alongside the Porourangi Meeting house of his iwi and the Kōkako bird.

Interested to learn more? Check out the rest of our legends here>

An exciting year ahead for Children’s University

Following the success of the 2019 pilot, Children’s University Canterbury Partnership (CUCP) has an exciting year ahead.

Expansion – CUCP will expand in 2020 to enrol over 600 children and young people from 12-17 schools and rūnanga across Christchurch, Hurunui, Selwyn and Waimakariri District. We are excited to bring on 5-8 new schools.

Campus Experiences – CUCP will run five on-campus experiences at Lincoln University and five at the University of Canterbury to give children an understanding of what University is like through fun and hands on activities and interactive lectures. If you are interested in knowing more about how you or your department can get involved please contact Amy Underdown.

Passport to Volunteering – This year we will roll out the Passport to Volunteering, which is for young people aged 14 – 18. This programme recognises the contributions young people make via volunteering, service and leadership to their school and community.

Student Volunteers – We have a number of avenues where students can volunteer to support CUCP:

  • Help during campus experiences
  • Run lunchtime club activities in CUCP schools and rūnanga
  • Act as a School Liaison Volunteer
  • Create online content
  • Support during the Graduations in November

If you know of any students that may be interested in volunteering, please encourage them to contact Amy Underdown.

For more information about Children’s University, please contact Amy Underdown – amy.underdown@canterbury.ac.nz