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Cultural exchange as sister cities meet


Delegation meeting with the DVC Māori, Distinguished Professor Hīngangaroa Smith.

Massey University hosted a Native American delegation as part of the recent annual New Zealand sister cities conference, which was held in Palmerston North. The group from Palmerston North’s sister city Missoula included the delegation from Montana University who have been talking with Massey regarding indigenous programmes.

Hone Morris from Te Pūtahi-a-Toi visited Montana University last year representing Te Kunenga ki Pūrehuroa as part of a Mayoral Delegation to progress talks on an MOU which could led to a combined indigenous qualification and he says it was important to have the group from Montana come to Massey this year.

The delegation which included University of Montana Office of American Indian Student Services Director, Michelle Kipp, of the Shashone-Bannock tribe, were hosted by Te Pūtahi-a-Toi for three days and as well as visiting the campus, received a Māori art tour with Professor Bob Jahnke along with visits to students at Mana Tamariki and staying overnight at Rangiotū Marae.
The delegation also met with the Deputy Vice-Chancellor Māori, Distinguished Professor Hīngangaroa Smith and Massey’s International office. Other members of the indigenous group were; Willow Kipp (Shashone-Bannock, Blackfeet), Eldena and Rose Bear Don’t Walk (Salish, Crow) and Shawn White Grass (Blackfeet).

The cultural exchange included performances of Native American dances and the painting of a large mural in Palmerston North by Montana University student Willow Kipp as a lasting gift to the city.

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