New Zealand: An unexplored destination to study and work

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Dr Eric Lithander, Deputy Vice-Chancellor of the University of Auckland and Ainsley Moore, International Director of the University of Auckland, visited India in the recent academic year to find ways to increase their number of international students and helped us understand why the country should be. Will be considered by Indian students.

‘We are making post-pandemic India our number one priority, we are going to put a lot of effort into developing our research partnerships and identifying the best students to attract to New Zealand. It’s a great time to even start developing some programs for students coming to India,’ says Dr Eric Lithander.

‘Our first priority is to go back to pre-pandemic Indian student enrollment numbers and then see where we go. The second thing I would say is that we want to make sure that Indian students are aware of everything we do.’ According to Ainslie

But, why New Zealand? What does the country have to offer Indian students who prefer UK, USA, Canada or even Australia over them?

Dr. Eric outlined two main factors, academic opportunities and career prospects. ‘The University of Auckland is the number one ranked university in the country, we’re comfortably in the top 100, 12 of our disciplines are in the top 50 in the world and recently, notably, we’re in the top 10 in the world, and two major rankings for sustainability.’

He added, ‘We are number one for employability in New Zealand and top 60 globally for graduate employability and reputation. In fact, New Zealand’s economy is essentially at full employment right now. For students coming in now, it’s incredibly easy to get a part-time job while they study and the post-study opportunities are great because in New Zealand with a one-year Masters, you get three years of work rights.’

Job opportunities beyond degree completion are a concern for students wishing to study abroad. Ainsile cites a study to claim that New Zealand offers more skilled, degree-level jobs to international graduates than any other country. For one degree-eligible international student whose job title suggests they may be under-employed there are about 10 degree-eligible international students who have a job title.

The top 10 occupations for international degree graduates from universities when applying for skilled immigrant visas were: (1) Resident Medical Officer, (2) Accountant, (3) Early Childhood Teacher, (4) Retail Manager, (5) Cafe or Restaurant Manager, (6) Marketing Specialist, (7) ICT Customer Support Officer, (8) Secondary School Teacher, (9) Development Programmer and (10) Software Engineer. These occupations were the basis for 36% of all approved skills-based work visa applications for our study population.

‘If you’re graduating with a bachelor’s degree, you should go to Go add skill level three or four, we can look and see if our graduates are going when they’re reporting their tax balance occupations. Within skilled professions that equates to very involved discipline,’ asserts Ainsall.

What kind of student life does New Zealand offer?

‘Auckland ranks among the most diverse cities in the world. So, we have an incredible mix of people, including a significant Indian diaspora. When Indian students arrive in Auckland they will get the right amount of exposure as they will meet members of the diaspora they will be able to get the foods they love they will get the cultural experiences they miss. At the same time as they are immersed in this incredible mix of other cultures,’ says Dr Eric.

How easy is it to live permanently in New Zealand?

Ainsle says, ‘Permanent residency requires skilled immigrants to reach a certain salary threshold and that’s 85% of the median salary. Three years, almost three years is enough time to get there. So, you have experience points, if you’ve worked in your discipline, you’ve had a job in your discipline and you’re earning that salary threshold, then you have enough points to practice permanent resident.’

‘New Zealand is that hidden gem waiting to be discovered, I think students have got a great offer because if you combine the scenery, the safety, the diversity, the quality of education for the money, I don’t think there is a better offer than New Zealand. What Zeeland and we are trying to do, is get that message out and make sure we can communicate it to the students,’ Ainsley concluded.

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