Local rangatahi studying in health

Katie Scorringe

I was born and raised in Whanganui and attended Castlecliff Primary, Rutherford Intermediate, and Wanganui High School.

After graduating at Wanganui High in 2011, I went to Dunedin to study at the University of Otago. I spent my first three years at the campus in Dunedin. I am now living in Wellington for the last three years of my practical training.

I absolutely love what I do. Studying medicine is the most rewarding thing. To learn about the body is amazing in itself but to also have the opportunity to connect with whanau and to help people is a true honour.

I will choose Whanganui because it is where I see myself in the future. I wish to return back to my hometown and provide a service for my people to aid in increasing the hauora of the individual and their whanau.

Andrew Ashworth


I was born and raised in Whanganui, have lived there all my life, and went to Fordell Primary School and Wanganui City College. I'm currently studying at the University of Otago, Dunedin School of Medicine.

I studied First Year Health Science following secondary school and got into medicine. As a fifth year medical student, my current interests for a career path in medicine are Surgery, Dermatology and Emergency medicine.

I haven't really known what to expect after starting my medical career at university. I didn't know anyone in the medical profession prior to starting medical school to get advice from or talk about medicine to. Now as I am coming to the end of my medical degree, I have been exposed to many medical specialties and learned a great deal about the medical profession. Working in medicine can be difficult and stressful at times but is also rewarding and exciting. I believe I have made the right career choice for me and I find promoting health and giving back to the community very fulfilling.

I have recently worked at Whanganui Hospital on the Health Summership Programme and I really enjoyed my time there as a student doctor. The staff and the patients who I was involved with were all incredibly nice and helpful. I would absolutely love to work in Whanganui in the future as a House Officer.

Rangimarie Wiari

I was born and raised in Whanganui and went to Wanganui City College.

I am currently studying at Otago University on a foundation course – Tu Kahika Programme, which I was a successful recipient of a scholarship towards the course and part of my accommodation costs.

I am currently working on being accepted onto the degree of medicine for 2016 and I hope that I can return to Whanganui once I have completed my degree and give back to my iwi and community. My iwi motivates me to undertake the challenge and make a difference to the current Maori health statistics which is something I am very passionate about.

Josh Firmin

I was born and raised in Whanganui, eight years at Upokongaro School and my secondary years at Cullinane College. In 2011, I moved to Dunedin to study health sciences and after three years graduating with a Bachelor of Science degree in biochemistry with Māori Studies. I then entered medical school as a graduate student and I am currently in my fourth year.

Medicine is busy and it’s often quite challenging, but it’s also an incredibly rewarding career. Medicine involves a lot of science, but at the end of the day it’s all about people: as a medical student, you’re able to talk to people every day and learn about their lives. It’s often quite moving when they share with you the struggles and problems that they face and it’s a great feeling when you’re able to provide or contribute towards something that makes those struggles easier for them. After only a few years in medicine, it's hard to imagine doing anything else now.

Studying in health has shown me a different perspective of the world and this continually motivates me to want to make a positive impact in our communities. At the moment, I’m thinking of becoming a GP or a psychiatrist but a good thing about a medical career is that there are so many different roads that you can take. Working with Te Hau Ranga Ora - Māori Health Services on a Summership placement as a student was a great way to get a feel for the services that we have at Whanganui District Health Board and working with local people gave me a better understanding of the health needs within our community.

‘Ko au te awa, ko te awa ko au: Whanganui will always be home and I’d love to return in the future to work with our people’.