The Forum for Māori academic interests at Victoria University of Wellington.
Toihuarewa is a subcommittee of Academic Board and the forum and vehicle for Māori academic issues at the University. Toihuarewa is an expression of the University's commitment to the Treaty of Waitangi.
The Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Māori) is the Convener of Toihuarewa.
Toihuarewa provides an important Māori perspective and voice on academic issues. Toihuarewa maintains representation on most of the main University committees as well as Academic Board.
Toihuarewa holds alternate meetings on a monthly cycle; one for purely academic issues followed by one that covers the broader concerns of all Māori staff at Victoria.
Professor Rawinia Higgins
Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Māori)
Professor Rawinia Higgins (Tūhoe) was appointed Te Tumu Ahurei (Māori) / Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Māori) of Victoria University of Wellington in 2016. She was previously Victoria’s Assistant Vice-Chancellor Māori Research and Head of School for Te Kawa a Māui / School of Māori Studies. Professor Higgins came to Victoria as a senior lecturer in 2009 after holding academic positions at the University of Otago for 12 years. Her research expertise is Māori language revitalisation and, more specifically, language planning and policy.
Professor Higgins is a member of the Waitangi Tribunal, a board member of Te Mātāwai, Ngā Pae o Te Māramatanga (Māori Centre of Research Excellence), and is the Deputy Chair of the Māori Knowledge and Development PBRF portfolio.
In 2015, the Minister for Māori Development appointed her chair of the review of the Māori Language Bill and she helped shape the legislation enacted in April 2016. Te Mātāwai was created as part of the new legislation and governs The Māori Language Strategy dedicated to whānau, hapū, iwi and Māori communities.