Bula Vinaka. My name is Riko Davis, I am part Fijian and volleyball player from New Zealand. I currently live in Tauranga, Bay of Plenty where I have just finished my final year at high school at Papamoa College. My goal is to play volleyball at a Division 1 while I complete an Undergraduate Degree in Performing Arts. I have been playing volleyball for five years, primarily as an opposite/middle but I am also gaining more experience as an outside hitter lately.
I also have a recently discovered passion for performing arts – acting and singing. I have done two years drama studies, and played a large lead role in our school production.
I love outdoor adventures with my family – mountain biking, skiing, rock climbing and camping.
My mother is a teacher, my father works directing action in movies and my sister is studying sociology at Victoria University.
SAT Total Score
Papamoa College Senior Mens A Team 2020-2023
-Bronze at Regional Championships 2021 and 2023
-2021: Division 3 Winners at National Championships
-2023: Division 1 8th place at National Championships
-Aotearoa Maori Poirewa Squad 2021 and 2023 (National Indigenous Team)
-2020 Regional Development Squad
Additional sporting info
I do Tae Kwon Do and currently hold rank of Blue Belt with a Red Stripe.
I enjoy mountain biking and rock climbing and skiing
I have been training at Adams Academy Elite Training Facility in Tauranga this year
When I was younger I played football and basketball
Best Team: Aotearoa Maori Poirewa (New Zealand Indigenous squad)
Best result: 8th at National Championships
What makes you different?
I have a very broad range of experiences and skills. My family and I are very adventurous, always looking for the next mountain bike ride, bush walk or camping trip to go on. These experiences have meant I am good at thinking through risk taking and have a keen sense of adventure. I like rock climbing, skiing and mountain biking as recreational activities.
I am well travelled, my father's work takes him all over the world so I have gone to visit him in Malaysia, China, Australia and others. I think being exposed to the challenge of travel and experiencing other cultures has made me resilient, adaptable and appreciative of what I have in NZ.
My father is Fijian, and when I was younger (and pre pandemic) we visited Fiji almost annually. Time spent in Fiji means that I have experienced living in my other culture and I am very open to trying new things (especially food). Fiji is a developing country and life is difficult there for many people, this has meant I have an empathy and understanding of lives different to my own up bringing.
During my time at school I made sure I tried many different pathways and made sure I never took opportunities lightly. In my final year at school I was privileged enough to be given the role of Deputy Head Boy for my school. This meant I stepped up to leadership roles and had lots of public speaking opportunities. I am now very comfortable addressing large crowds, working in groups of both peers and non-peers, and communicating with adults in positions of responsibility. I have been a part of the wider student leadership team at Papamoa College for the past 5 years.
On top of being a school leader, playing top level volleyball and holding down a part-time job, I also enjoy drama and the performing arts. I played the lead role of our school production of the Addams Family Musical in 2023 - it was a singing, acting and dancing role with 6 solo songs. I received the school award for Emerging Talent two years in a row in 2022 and 2023.
I am also very proud of being selected as "Citizen of the Year" in my Year 11 and Year 13 at school. This is given to the student who best upholds and lives up to the school values of Respect, Excellence, Participation and Relationships. It is an honour to be recognised for qualities that I believe make a "good person".
Why do you want to compete in college?
I've always loved the idea that I could play competitive volleyball alongside my studies. Although it is possible for me to play in New Zealand, I want the adventure of going to another country as well as being able to play volleyball at a much higher level.
I like the idea of experiencing life in another country and I am ready to explore the possible challenges and opportunities that come with it. I think playing and studying in the USA would be a great opportunity to grow my sporting skills and add depth of experience to my game. The USA offers a wide range of options in the fields I want to pursue.
I really enjoy team sports and I want to be able to meet new people and make new friends. I see this an opportunity for me to grow as a person AND continue the development of the sport I love at a high level.
-My first choice is to study as an acting major or theatre major, this is to develop my passion in the performing arts.
-An opportunity to step up in my volleyball experience and skills, grow as a player and with team work
-To grow my independence as a young adult and broaden my world view.
Anything else we should know?
I am very keen to keep my education broad and to develop many aspects of my interests and skills - the performing arts, academics and sports.
NCEA Level 1 Merit Endorsement NCEA Level 2 Merit Endorsement NCEA Level 3 Achieved - some grades still pending