Last month researchers, professors and experts from leading Indian and New Zealand universities met in Mumbai for an academic conclave to enhance the impact of universities in driving global innovation. The conclave highlighted that there has been a 51 per cent increase in the number of Indian students choosing to study in New Zealand universities through to June 2019. Today, New Zealand is ranked as one of the best English-speaking education system in preparing students for the future.
New Zealand’s education system is ranked first amongst English-speaking countries and third in the world for delivering a futurefocused education (out of 50 economies), says John Laxon, regional director Asia, Education New Zealand. The applied learning approach and future-focused education in New Zealand exposes students to real-work scenarios and help graduates into their work life. The New Zealand Government recently introduced an open post-study work visa for international students undertaking undergraduate and postgraduate study for up to three years.
New Zealand universities specialise in areas such as agriculture, engineering and animation. Its tertiary education system offers niche and vocational courses which offer good job prospects such as sports management, adventure tourism and aviation. New Zealand’s inquiry model of learning’ includes lots of project-based learning, where students work in groups on an assignment of their own design. As a part of this, we have been driving innovation by creating and applying knowledge in our specialised fields of expertise, says Laxon. These projects take students outside the classroom, from art galleries and museums to forests and beaches, where they can see how their studies have real-world implications. The eight universities one can choose to study here are Auckland University of Technology, University of Auckland, Massey University, University of Otago, or Victoria University of Wellington, Lincoln University, University of Waikato, and University of Canterbury.
Indian students mostly prefer to study postgraduate programmes at Massey University, such as Logistics, Analytics, Business, Engineering, Information Sciences and Education. At the undergraduate level, students choose Massey’s niche, unique programmes in veterinary sciences and aviation. Massey University has introduced a new one year MBA, and postgraduate programmes in sustainability and emergency management. Massey will also offer Master of Engineering Studies and renewable energy systems in 2020.
SCHOLARSHIPS ON OFFER
In 2016, Education New Zealand launched the New Zealand Excellence Awards (NZEA), a scholarship programme for Indian university students. Earlier, these awards were focused on postgraduate students, offering them the opportunity to study at Massey. In April, we launched our first New Zealand Excellence Awards for undergraduate Indian students. These awardees have already begun their respective courses at Massey University in July 2019, informs Laxon.
Massey University is participating in the NZEA scheme and scholarships in 2020 for Masters’ students enrolling in February next year. Additionally, Massey will also provide scholarships valued at minimum NZ$5,000 up to a value of NZ$20,000 for students enrolling on Humanities, Social Science, and Creative Arts undergraduate degrees.
New Zealand’s applied learning approach and exposure to real work scenarios helps graduates transition from study to work. Most qualify work-ready’ which is attractive to future employers. New Zealand ranks seventh for highest performing graduates (out of 40 countries), ahead of graduates of elite universities in both the US and the UK.
In February 2019, Massey University saw a 48 per cent increase in Indian students enrolling, as compared to February 2018. In the July 2019 cycle, Massey registered a year-on-year growth of 127 per cent. Massey University has associations with Telangana State Seed Organic Certification Authority, the Government of Telangana and the Indian National Seed Association, says Laxon. According to him, Indian alumni from Massey have secured jobs in both New Zealand and India across industries such as logistics and operations, fashion, start-ups, microbiology, visual merchandising, sports management, chartered accountancy, and seed technology. Currently settled in Auckland, Megha Sharma, a Massey alumna, does a full-time job as a visual merchandiser for a New Zealand fashion retail organisation. She also provides designthinking based consultancy to Seed to Self – Project Matatika a project for those who wish to practice sustainable fashion.