• Home
  • News
  • Keen to get out and put skills to good use

Keen to get out and put skills to good use

November 18, 2013
Rachael Mele Kaufo'ou Maka, Student, Bachelor of Nursing

Rachael Mele Kaufo’ou Maka, Student, Bachelor of Nursing

Small steps are big steps in the world of nursing student Rachael Maka. The 22-year-old from Tonga started her tertiary journey at EIT Tairāwhiti in the literacy skills programme in 2009.

That led to the foundation nursing course in 2010 and she is now in her second year of a Bachelor of Nursing degree.

Rachael, her five siblings and parents moved from their island home to Gisborne in 2009.

“I had finished high school and had a lot of fun in the one semester literacy skills course I did at EIT Tairāwhiti,” she says.

“Nursing is something I have always wanted to do. My mum’s two sisters were nurses and also one of my dad’s cousins in Auckland.”

With her second year of study now well underway, Rachael is starting to think about what area she may specialise.

“I am swinging between the hospital and the community, but I think it will probably be best if I work at the hospital first to get more experience and then into the community.”

She is the first to admit that she has to work very hard to keep up with her studies and good grades, but it is made easier by the support students receive at EIT Tairāwhiti.

“We have really good lecturers – they are so helpful – and the equipment and our classes are amazing,” she says.

“I’m so looking forward to when I graduate and can get out and help people myself.”

Rachael is not the only Maka family member to have graced the halls at EIT Tairāwhiti either – her younger brother studied carpentry before heading out to work in the logging industry.