New Zealand’s Top University Launches Support Package Exclusively for Students from India

New Delhi: Indian students can now begin their study at New Zealand’s top university while still in India waiting to be able to travel to Auckland.

The University of Auckland has launched an innovative support package designed specifically for undergraduate and masters students from India who want to advance their study ahead of New Zealand’s phased reopening of its border during 2022.

The approach reflects the University of Auckland’s commitment to its Indian students who have been welcomed and valued members of its campus community for more than a decade.  Indian students contribute significantly to the University’s research activity.

University of Auckland Vice Chancellor Professor Dawn Freshwater said Covid-19 and the Delta and Omicron variants have had a devasting impact on India and its students.

“It has meant online study and an inability to travel abroad to further their ambitions in overseas universities. It has also meant that we have been unable to visit India to meet with colleagues.”

International Director Brett Berquist led a process to consider how the University could support Indian students through this difficult period of phased border reopening.

“We know many students finance their studies through educational loans, which are complicated to secure while studying part-time and online. Having recognised this as an obstacle, we are offering deferred fees payment for science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) masters students.”

These masters students will be able to begin their studies online from India while delaying their tuition payments until they activate their education loan when they travel to New Zealand. These students will also be offered a 30 percent bursary starting this year.

“We believe this innovative approach is a win-win as students can press on and begin their masters with the University of Auckland,” Mr Berquist said.

An undergraduate student support package has also been developed after extensive research with students and their families in India.  It includes virtual micro-internships with NZ companies, a loyalty programme providing a one-course fee waiver after the completion of two semesters of full-time study. This programme includes additional online support.

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Professor Freshwater said “Our support package will allow students to begin building their employability skills, while starting their studies in India. And once they arrive in New Zealand, they will benefit from our world-leading work rights provisions which they can use while studying and for three years once their studies are complete.”

The University of Auckland looks forward to welcoming vaccinated students back to its internationally renowned campuses.  New Zealand has approved eight vaccines including Indian-made vaccines Covisheild and Covaxin.

The University recently sponsored the QS India Summit and launched New Zealand’s first joint PhD programme with IITs.  With New Zealand’s seven other universities, it is establishing a New Zealand Centre at IIT Delhi which will be a place of New Zealand-connection for Indian students and academics.

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