Summer Internship Programme

Applications are now open for the Te Puni Kōkiri Summer Internship Programme 2023-2024!  

Applications close on Sunday 3 September 2023 at 10:00pm. 

Last updated: Monday, 14 August 2023 | Rāhina, 14 Hereturikōkā, 2023

About the programme

Our internship offers an opportunity for current university/wānanga students and recent graduates to participate in a paid intern programme for 12 weeks over the summer.

The programme gives participants a chance to put their knowledge and experience into action at either our Wellington-based National Office or at one of our Regional Offices across the motu.

We consider interns from all backgrounds who have diverse perspectives, innovative ideas and a passion for improving outcomes for Māori to work towards our vision of Thriving Whānau.

Past Interns Experiences

Our previous interns Clarke Spence, Advisor, Ministerial Services, and Candace Te Rangi, Advisor, Investments, share their experiences as Te Puni Kōkiri Summer Interns.

"My experience as an intern was exactly what I had hoped it would be and more. I got to experience many different parts of the life of a public servant, with plenty of support from the kaimahi around me, while also meeting a great group of tauira to start my career with. I have been very fortunate to be able to continue working on the mahi I enjoyed so much as an intern [...] I’m incredibly grateful for the Te Puni Kōkiri intern program and everything it has allowed me to experience!” – Clarke Spence.

In 2021 I had the amazing opportunity to join Te Puni Kōkiri as a Summer Intern in the Investment Planning and Support tīma […] I really enjoyed learning about Investments and how our mahi impacts Māori communities all over Aotearoa. My team was a safe learning environment, with āwhina and manaakitanga, where ‘no question is a silly question’ [...] One of the highlights for me was getting to know my intern cohort. I was able to connect with like-minded rangatahi who share a passion for Māori development and Thriving Whānau [...] I thoroughly enjoyed my experience as an intern at Te Puni Kōkiri” – Candace Te Rangi, Ngāti Tūwharetoa, Ngāti Porou, Te Whānau-a-Apanui.

What does Te Puni Kōkiri do?

Te Puni Kōkiri is the principal policy advisor to the government on Māori wellbeing and development. At Te Puni Kōkiri we are working towards achieving our vision of Thriving Whānau, creating and Aotearoa New Zealand  where all whānau, hapū and iwi can all stand, thrive and belong.

Our head office is in central Wellington and we have 17 regional offices across the country.

Why become an intern at Te Puni Kōkiri?

Aside from gaining work experience in a kaupapa Māori organisation, an internship at Te Puni Kōkiri provides an opportunity for you to:

  • Apply knowledge from your studies to everyday working situations.
  • Enhance your ‘work-ready’ skills.
  • Teach you how to communicate and adapt to meet the requirements of a real business.
  • Have a direct impact Māori wellbeing.
How many positions are available?

Internship opportunities vary from year to year depending on the needs of our Regional Offices or National Office.

Who should apply?
  • Tertiary students who have completed at least two years of study and could be studying from a broad range of disciplines.
  • Tertiary students who show high capability or indicates a willingness to learn te reo Māori and be immersed in te ao Māori.
  • Tertiary graduates who are less than 2 years post-study completion.

As an employee of Te Puni Kōkiri, you will embody our values and te ao Māori as you support Te Puni Kōkiri to work towards the vision of Thriving Whanau.

You will be required to:

  • Think critically and explore options for innovative solutions to complex issues.
  • Relate well to others.
  • Be willing to listen and engage to understand diverse perspectives.
  • Learn to understand how Te Puni Kōkiri works to enable system-wide influence.
  • Be agile and adaptive to change.
  • Communicate clearly and concisely.

Internship Areas

Internship opportunities in each puni vary from year to year depending on our needs, and the opportunities within our National Office, Wellington and our regional offices. 

Internships in our Regional Offices provide opportunities to work closely with our communities within a kaupapa-focused environment. 

Puni Functions Team
Policy Partnerships Develop and advise on policy issues and solutions for Māori wellbeing and development

Our Policy Directorates:

  • Insights
  • Development
  • Wellbeing
Strategy, Finance and Performance Provide strategic direction, support external influence and monitor organisational performance, internally and externally.
  • Strategy and Performance
  • System Performance Monitoring
  • Statutory Entities including nominations and appointments
  • Finance
  • Procurement
Regional Partnerships and Operations

Manage and advise on investment priorities and performance

Support engagement with and delivery of, services to iwi, hapū and whānau

  • Regional strategy and implementation
  • Iwi, hapū and whānau engagement
  • Brokering and facilitation
  • Funding support and delivery
  • Investment Portfolios
  • Investment and planning

Programmes and operations

  • Whenua
  • Māori Wardens
  • Whānau Ora
  • Māori Enterprises
  • Marae Ora

Māori Enterprise

Organisational Support Develop and manage Te Puni Kōkiri core capabilities, and providing corporate services including:
  • Communications, Engagement & Events
  • Knowledge Systems
  • Technology & Systems
  • People & Capability
  • Property & Facilities
  • Legal Services
Critical Projects & Governance Manages projects of critical importance to Ministers and the Secretary for Māori Development and focuses on quality decision making and connections between decision makers.
  • Critical Projects
  • Governance
  • Ministerial Services
  • Risk and Assurance

How are interns chosen?

The Recruiting team compile a shortlist of applicants who are then invited to an interview or assessment hui.  Following this, offers are made to successful applicants. 

How to apply?

Applications for our Summer Internship Programme close on Sunday 3 September 2023 at 10:00pm.

All applications must include the following documents and be submitted via the advertisement on our Careers page:

  • A current Curriculum Vitae.
  • A Cover Letter that includes answers to the following questions:
    • What are your areas of interest with respect to Māori wellbeing?
    • Why are you applying for this internship programme?
    • What does Māori wellbeing mean to you?
  • An up-to-date Academic Transcript (this does not need to be an official transcript).

Any pātai can be sent to