A Northland woman will be exploring how Contact Energy can use water more efficiently after she was one of three Maori selected to partake in the company's internship programme.

Cara Berghan, of Ngai Takoto descent, grew up in Kaitaia and just completed her third year of a four-year Bachelor of Engineering degree at the University of Auckland.

Early last month she was selected to be part of Contact Energy's internship programme aimed at supporting more Maori into the corporate roles.s

"I've always been drawn towards helping people and so through design and creative solutions I hope that I can help people indirectly.


"I also love numbers so give me anything to do with maths or science and I can geek out on that," she said.

As part of the eight-week internship Ms Berghan will be assisting the sustainability team with their work to improve Contact's management and stewardship of water.

"It's about looking at other companies who have taken a position on water and looking at their water consumption and usage and contrasting that with Contact's to improve the way water is used so it can be used more efficiently," she said.

At only 21 Ms Berghan has already had engineering successes. She was part of a group who placed second in an Engineers Without Borders design challenge providing a solar energy solution for a school in Tonga.

"Opportunities like this are so important for young Maori particularly in Northland because it opens doors that we never knew existed. It broadens the minds of young Maori who are absolutely keen to learn, put in hard work, and contribute their ideas and opinions. Opportunities like this encourage us to go outside our comfort levels, look beyond our home towns and think about things from various perspectives."