Two Rotorua high school students won scholarships up to the value of $20,000 to help them apply and get accepted into their dream university.
Blue Simpkins-Jones and Koan Hemana, both Year 12 students at Rotorua Boys' High School, will split the $100,000 Te Ara a Kupe Beaton scholarship with three other Kiwi students.
Now in its fourth year, the scholarship was founded to encourage young Māori representation on the global stage.
It's New Zealand's only scholarship to support Māori high school students to gain admission to the world's most competitive universities.
Simpkins-Jones hopes to study in the United States and to disprove the stereotypical view held by some that Māori can't do well in society or are "gang members, drunks and mischievous".
Hemana wants to study medicine in the United States, in the hopes of giving back to New Zealand communities and helping change the healthcare system for the better.
Crimson Education chief executive and co-founder Jamie Beaton, who founded the scholarship programme, said it continues to guide and mentor a high calibre of students to access priceless education opportunities.
"The Te Ara a Kupe Beaton Scholarship is an opportunity to celebrate Māori high school students who are blazing a trail through high academic performance, brave innovation and exceptional community leadership," he said.
"From an aspiring doctor who wishes to improve health outcomes for the Māori community to a future Prime Minister with a mission to create inclusive policies to elevate Māori voices, we are proud to see the dreams our recipients hold and the strides that they continue to make."
Judges in the 2021 scholarship include Shay Wright, the Rt Hon Sir John Key, Jamie Beaton, Karen Ross, David Buisson, Lily Holder McFlinn and Sam Taylor.
Taylor, a former Mount Maunganui student who was awarded the scholarship at 15, had aspirations of becoming the first Māori Prime Minister.
After three years of mentoring and tutoring with Crimson, he secured a perfect SAT score and was accepted into Harvard University.