Emotional displays are nothing new at Massey University's celebration to honour graduates in its Maori studies courses but no one was expecting a student to seize the opportunity to make a grand romantic gesture at last Thursday's ceremony in Palmerston North.

Waipounamu Kara (Ngāpuhi, Raukawa, Tainui) and partner Te Karohirohi Kira (Ngāti Kahungunu ki Te Wairoa, Kāi Tahu, Muriwhenua, Ngāpuhi ki Whaingaroa-Ngāti Kahu ki Whaingaroa) were graduating from Massey's postgraduate Māori medium teaching and learning diploma programme Te Aho Paerewa, when Kara surprised everyone, including himself, by going down on one knee to propose.

To the delight of the large