" I am a proud young Tuwhareto man who loves all things Maori and his whanua and who also values what a good education can do for me, and his whanua and his people", Whakauekaipapa wrote in his application.
Whakau is a fluent speaker of Maori and a student of the Rumaki Immersion Unit. He has achieved NCEA level 2 Maori whilst he was in year 11 and sat Scholarship Maori at the end of year 12.
As a leading Kapa haka and cultural performer, he has been involved in many competitions and performances for his school and Marae and currently performs for the Mitai Village in Rotorua.
Whakau lists his leisure activities to include Kapa haka, Iwi noho wananga, Whare tu taua, snowboarding and also karate, where he has been awarded medals and placements at Trans- Tasman competitions.
Whakau is heading to Waikato University in 2015 to study for a Bachelor of Arts, majoring in Te Reo Maori and Tikanga Maori.