Education New Zealand announces Internships for Indian Women students during the ‘Women of the Future’ event
Education New Zealand Manapou ki te Ao (ENZ) hosted its first-ever international women’s day summit “Women of the Future” in celebration of International Women’s Day. The event witnessed inspiring stories from women achievers and leaders from New Zealand and India that encouraged young women of the future. The event also gathered many eyeballs with discussions on issues relating to gender equality while providing a platform to mobilize resources to address equity and inclusion.
David Pine, New Zealand’s High Commissioner to India said, “Research indicates that good gender equality is for everyone and key to not just achieving the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Sustainable Development Goals, but also boost economic growth, enhance productivity, improve development outcomes for the next generation, and make institutions more representative.”
He further added, “The opportunity in India seems to be enormous. McKinsey has estimated that if women’s participation were fully equal to men’s, the country’s GDP could rise by as much as 60%. That would mean an overall gain of almost 3 trillion dollars, which is over two thousand dollars per person. In New Zealand, we also have a long way to go. The same estimates done for New Zealand show a potential gain of 25%. It’s hard to imagine another area of policy with so much untapped potential.”
Hon. Ms. Priyanca Radhakrishnan, Minister for Diversity, Inclusion and Ethnic Communities of New Zealand graced the event and said, “it is particularly wonderful to be part of this event organized by Education New Zealand because I came to New Zealand as an International student myself. I came here to study, and that was partly because of the wonderful job that Education New Zealand does.” On being asked about the driving force of joining politics, she said, “I am going to begin my response to that question with a Māori Whakataukī or a proverb “Ehara taku toa I te toa Takitahi, e ngari he toa takitini” which translates roughly to say that “success is not one’s own but the work of many” I stand on the shoulders of the women who have gone before me in Parliament, broke some of those moulds and paved the way for others like me. For me personally, it’s always been social justice that has motivated me to act and to get into politics as well. I worked for many years running a refuge organization that supported women of Asian, African and Middle Eastern origin here in Aotearoa New Zealand and part of my role was to lobby successive governments for change in the family violence prevention space. Also, my parents raised me to be politically aware, to think critically and to challenge the status quo. Finally, to cut a very long story short, when I was doing my Masters, I met a former senior cabinet minister who pointed out that for many years I had worked in the NGO sector knocking on the doors for change and suggested that perhaps I’d like to be at the table and be part of that change so I gave it a go and here we are.”
She further advised the next generation of women leaders and said, “when you are in that position where you can challenge stereotypes and you have got a platform to be able to do that to make sure you use it to continue to keep that ladder down for other women as well. We all have a role to play in terms of challenging stereotypes. One of the issues that often gets raised with me by ethnic minority communities here is employment – and more specifically barriers to employment. I have been working on an employment action plan that aims to lift employment outcomes for people from these communities. To address some of those barriers and also challenges like the gender pay gap, we need employers to understand and value diversity – and also take tangible steps to be more inclusive. So that means embedding diversity and inclusion in workplace practices. And as I said, we all have a role to play across various sectors to take collective action to address barriers to women’s participation.
As part of the event, prominent names from the higher education sector from New Zealand and India including Ainslie Moore, Director International, University of Auckland; Ziena Jalil, Independent Director and award-winning public and business leader; Swati Popat Vats, President, Podar Education Network, along with Prof. Sheela Reddy, Principal, Sri Venkateshwara College, University of Delhi shared their insights on “Leading with authenticity: Lifting the next generation of women”.
The panel reflected on the challenges faced by women and encouraged the younger women generation to empower themselves to become the leaders of tomorrow. Miss Malini, a renowned digital influencer graced the event and shared a glimpse of her journey right from an RJ to achieving heights in the industry. From breaking barriers of the society to carving a niche of her own, Malini Agarwal’s story paved the way as a thought starter for women of the future.
With a constant effort of ensuring the right mix of industry expertise, inclusiveness and overall development, Education New Zealand has been pushing various initiatives to help build the future of Indian students.
As part of various learning opportunities and development programmes, Education New Zealand takes the first step in the direction of encouraging women to take the leap ahead with women centric initiatives for students.
Important announcements for Indian Students
- Virtual Micro Internships offered by University of Auckland for 10 Indian women students
- 25 High School girl students will be selected for the virtual exchange programme which earns them the Global Competence Certificate
Further, a four-week virtual Immersion Programme for 16 women students from New Zealand universities which will be conducted by Symbiosis International University. The Immersion Programme is a step in the direction of strengthened cultural ties and enhanced learning experiences for students.