Ka pū te ruha, ka hao te rangatahi – The next generation is coming through
According to Statistics New Zealand, by 2038, approximately 30% of the population – and therefore our future workforce – will be Māori.
We all have a role to play in supporting the development of our rangatahi as they prepare to begin their studies or enter ‘the world of work’. Over the last two years, Heartland Bank has provided internship opportunities for Māori students to test the waters of working life, before they enter the workforce.
Heartland’s six week paid internship programme is based on the Māori concept of ‘ako’, which means to learn and teach. The internship provides students with work experience over their summer holiday, and allows us to learn from them too – particularly in relation to how we can make Heartland more welcoming and inclusive to Māori people.
Following a successful programme in 2017, this year we opened our doors to 20 students from three Auckland schools. The internship was offered to students from the InZone Education
Foundation (an organisation which aims to enhance the educational outcomes of Māori youth by providing opportunities to attend Auckland Grammar and Epsom Girls Grammar schools), King’s College and Ngā Puna O Waiōrea (a Māori immersion unit within Western Springs College).
Through the programme, we aim to encourage students to return to Heartland or consider a career in the banking or finance industry.
Overwhelmingly, feedback from our interns has been positive. Since the programme began in 2017, four interns have had further employment with Heartland Bank and another two have returned forholiday work. One of those past interns is communications student Payton Taplin who is currently employed in Heartland’s communications and marketing team.
“The internship was such a great opportunity to see how our studies can be applied in a corporate environment,” said Payton. “Since joining the Heartland team on a more permanent basis, I’ve been learning heaps – and now I’m confident that my decision to study communications is a good one.”
Heartland is dedicated to promoting a diverse workplace where all people feel accepted for who they are – including our future Māori workforce. Overtime, we hope to become the employer of choice for emerging Māori talent. Our internship programme is just one of the ways we intend to achieve this.