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  • Wellington awards recognise inspiring students

    This year’s awardees came from intermediate, secondary and tertiary levels, and included the founder of a bilingual tutoring programme for international students, the founder of the Asian English-Speaking Club at Victoria University of Wellington and the official pianist at the 44th International Viola Congress.

    They were selected for a range of achievements from academic excellence, community engagement, to leadership and sport, with each winner receiving a trophy, certificate and tickets to a Wellington experience.

    MP Paul Eagle, WREDA CEO Lance Walker and WREDA’s Talent, Skills and Education Manager, Brook Pannell, were on hand at the ceremony, alongside a group from Wainuiomata High School and Kuranui College who performed Kapa Haka for the guests.

    Brook said he was thrilled to be on hand at the ceremony to acknowledge the achievements made by some of Wellington’s young talent.

    “International students make a powerful impact in their communities, and these awards reflect the great contributions they make in Wellington.

    “It’s a unique, modern and compact city where international students can feel at home, gain life skills in a safe city, and make friends.”

    Chinese international student Benjamin Lin, 18, received a Leadership Award for his achievements. As the youngest ‘authorised’ writer in his home country, he’s published two books and opened a writing school to raise money to study at Wellington High School.

    “Thanks to my father I loved reading and writing. My teacher at the time encouraged me to publish some of my poetry when I was around 10 in the form of a book. People really liked my work and it gave me the confidence to keep going,” says Benjamin.

    In 2015, Benjamin decided to progress his education in Wellington, and settled on Wellington High School. He funded his international study by tutoring students in writing.

    “I wanted to come to Wellington because it’s a smaller, modern city where I could improve my English.

    “In Wellington, I’ve appreciated having more time with my teachers and working on my English,” says Benjamin.

    Award winners:

    Academic excellence

    • Nam-Phuong Ho, Victoria University of Wellington (Viet Nam)
    • Yukiko Kuboshima, Victoria University of Wellington (Japan)
    • Khoi Nguyen, Te Aro School (Viet Nam)
    • Zihan Wang, Wellington Girls’ College (China)


    • Zilong Li, WelTec (China)

    Community engagement

    • Hanna Aulia, Victoria University of Wellington (Indonesia)
    • Ashley Cao, Victoria University of Wellington (Viet Nam)


    • Gabriela Glapska, New Zealand School of Music (Poland)


    • Benjamin Yin, Wellington High School (China)
    • Simran Bechan, Samuel Marsden Collegiate (Fiji)
    • Nur Natasha Faziera Mohd Fadzil, Victoria University of Wellington (Malaysia)


    • Mohammad Zahirul Amin Mohd Azam, Victoria University of Wellington (Malaysia)


    • Samuel Mathew, Wellington College (New Zealand)
    • Jordan Anderson, Victoria University of Wellington (New Zealand)

    Internationalisation Employer Award

    • InterContinental Hotel Group

    Click here for full details of the winners.

    The awards were developed as part of WREDA’s Wellington International Student Growth Programme (WISGP), which aims to double the number of international students arriving in Wellington by 2025, enhance the student experience and build pathways to employment in Wellington. 

  • Kiwi students become ambassadors in Beijing

    The students represented three cohorts from Massey University and the University Canterbury. Two of the groups were based at Peking University, while the other had been studying in Hangzhou.    

    This marks the second year in a row that PMSA groups have come together at a function at the New Zealand Embassy in Beijing.  

    New Zealand Ambassadorto China, Clare Fearnley, welcomed the visitors and provided an update on the China-New Zealand relationship. Other Embassy staff, representing a range of government agencies from the Ministry of Primary Industries to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade were present to talk to students about their roles and areas of interest. 

    ENZ Regional Director North Asia, Adele Bryant, said it provided a great opportunity to encourage the students to be ambassadors for New Zealand education during their stay in China. 

    “These students are ideally placed to help raise the profile of New Zealand education, as they are great examples of the kind of students we produce – independent thinkers, and creative, innovative and skilled young people.” 

    Massey University’s Head of the School of Humanities, Kerry Taylor, also believes in the value of the programmes to students, both now and in their future. 

    “The PMSA provides an opportunity for our high academic achievers to experience first-hand the dynamism and relevance of China to New Zealand,” said Kerry.  

    “Many will come back to do more study in China or develop business links with China that will contribute to New Zealand’s prosperity.”

    Massey PMSA group

    A PMSA group from Massey University at the New Zealand Centre, Peking University. The Massey students studied an intensive Chinese Language programme at PKU.

  • New Zealand alumni mentor prospective students in Korea

    On 5 June, the mentoring session in Seoul brought together 15 New Zealand-educated alumni who offered practical tips and advice to 55 prospective students interested in studying in New Zealand.

    ENZ worked with the Kiwi Alumni Group members, who volunteered to mentor students (with parents also in attendance) at the session.

    The mentoring session was held at the residence of the New Zealand Ambassador to South Korea, Philip Turner, who welcomed the students and alumni mentors.

    “The session was a great example of NZ Inc agencies working together and leveraging our networks. It was fantastic to see such strong interest in the session from students and parents,” Turner said.

    ENZ’s Senior Market Development Manager – Korea, Kay Lee, said she was pleased with the success of ENZ’s first mentoring event in Korea.

    “The session was a valuable opportunity for prospective students to mingle with New Zealand alumni and learn about their experiences of studying and living in New Zealand,” Kay said.

    “It was a way for prospective Korean students and parents to hear directly about authentic New Zealand experiences, and a meaningful way to engage closely with our alumni networks.”

    Two Korean speakers – a former student and the mother of a former student – addressed the meeting. Kiwi Alumni Group member, Susan Cho, spoke about how her New Zealand education experience positively influenced her career and life, while Sejin Oh, whose son studied in Tauranga for two years, talked about the value of a New Zealand education from a parent’s perspective.

    New Zealand alumni mentor prospective students in Korea 2

    Mentor Sejin Oh, who lived in New Zealand for her son’s education in Tauranga.

    The event also included a networking session, where attendees had the opportunity to ask alumni a range of questions about life and study in New Zealand.

  • The International Education Strategy – one year on

    Goal one: Delivering an excellent education and student experience

    Progress on goal one includes:

    • Launching NauMai NZ. ENZ has launched NauMai NZ, an online platform providing accurate, relevant information to help international students before they arrive and while they’re studying in New Zealand.
    • Reviewing migrant exploitation. MBIE is leading a cross-agency review of the exploitation of temporary migrant workers and international students.
    • Supporting wellbeing initiatives. MoE administers an annual funding round for international student wellbeing initiatives. Initiatives that have been funded have had very positive outcomes for students.
    • Strengthening English language requirements. NZQA has strengthened English language proficiency requirements for international students.
    • Relaunching ENZRA. The ENZ Recognised Agency programme was relaunched in November 2018.
    • Introducing new protections. MoE has introduced amendments to the Code of Practice including new contract and disciplinary protections, clearer requirements for residential caregiver safety checks, and more detailed requirements for monitoring education agents.

    Goal two: Achieving sustainable growth

     Progress on goal two includes:

    • Forming an innovation-focused group. A new pan-sector working group will inform the development of new education products that support the Strategy’s goals.
    • Refresh of the Think New brand. ENZ has refreshed our Think New brand strategy, including creating the identity ‘I am New’.

    Goal three: Developing global citizens

     Progress on goal three includes:

    • Developing an outbound mobility strategy. MoE has begun work on a new outbound mobility strategy. Objectives include increasing participation in exchange programmes by groups that have been historically underrepresented, including Māori and Pasifika students and students in lower decile schools.
    • Focusing on international graduate employability. A new ENZ report, Employer Perceptions of Hiring International Graduates, found New Zealand SME employers value the keen attitude and positive contribution made by New Zealand-educated international graduates.

  • Ask New Anything: ENZ's next global campaign

    I Am New Grid2

    Launching in mid-October, ENZ’s global digital campaign 'Ask New Anything' is our most technically sophisticated campaign yet.

    The 'Ask New Anything' campaign aims to challenge commonly held perceptions of New Zealand and increase awareness of the country as a high-quality study destination. It does this in a new and innovative way – by inviting audiences in 14 international markets to question what they know about New Zealand. 

    'Ask New Anything' will be the first time the refreshed 'Think New' brand has been widely used in digital channels. To read more about ‘I AM NEW’, see the E-News story ‘A brand NEW day’

    The campaign brings together ENZ’s digital insights, the refreshed brand and the Study in New Zealand chatbot Tohu, to give prospective students the answers they need to make an informed study decision.

    The creative concept

    Drawing on Google search data, China-specific insights and data from Tohu, we’ve pulled together a list of the most commonly searched questions about studying in New Zealand.

    We put these questions to real international students, a New Zealand student, a teacher, a parent and an employer and recorded their responses in 100 unscripted videos.

    As well as being used on YouTube, Facebook and other digital media, the videos will be available on demand in Tohu the chatbot (who can be found on the website, the NauMai NZ website and Facebook Messenger).

    If asked a question it cannot answer, Tohu will direct prospective students to a new Facebook group or Instagram Live event, where they can ask current international students their questions in real time, delivering on the promise that you can 'Ask New Anything'.

    In China, the campaign  will use the most relevant questions for the market within WeChat and other local platforms.

    ENZ Director Platforms and Campaigns, Euan Howden, says: “Harnessing our award-winning data and marketing platform, we're bringing the refreshed 'Think New' brand to life with a level of technical sophistication that we couldn't have dreamed of a year ago. I'm looking forward to seeing how audiences engage with this campaign, and how this affects their perceptions of New Zealand as their preferred study destination.”

    Introducing the new brand

    The campaign will be the first global digital showcase of the refreshed 'Think New' brand which  positions our international education brand for success and defines quality by the ways we help students make their mark on the world. Additionally, the campaign captures New Zealand’s values of societal openness, transparency and manaakitanga.

    ENZ Director Brand and Design, Kaylee Butters, says: “This is the most interactive campaign we’ve run to date. The involvement of our Kiwi Ambassadors and the direct connections enabled by the Facebook group and Instagram Live events really underpins the authenticity of the brand and puts our students right at the heart of the creative concept.”

    More information

    To find out more about the campaign, and how you can leverage this activity in your own marketing, please click here. This webpage will be updated regularly throughout the campaign as new information and resources become available.

  • New Zealand experience grows global indigenous network

    A special bond forged through a Study Abroad programme, involving Vermont’s Champlain College and Auckland University of Technology (AUT), was marked by the gifting of a unique pare whakairo (carved doorway mantel) to the US College in September.

    Called Te Hononga (The Convergence), the pare whakairo was created by kaiwhakairo (Māori carver) Pahi O’Carroll over four weeks in residence on the Champlain campus. 

    The pare is unlike any other. It is carved from a wood native to the area – black walnut – and evokes values, beliefs and traditions common to both Māori and the indigenous people of Vermont, the Abenaki.

    The relationship between Champlain and AUT dates back five years, when New Zealand Honorary Consul and trustee of Champlain College, Dr George Burrill, first established a study abroad exchange programme between the two institutions. To date, over 100 students have participated.

    One of the highlights of American students’ time at AUT is the Noho Marae programme.

    “Every year students tell us how the Noho Marae programme has profoundly impacted them,” ENZ General Manager – International, Lisa Futschek, says. “It turns them into lifelong advocates for New Zealand, its education system and Māori culture.”

    Run by AUT Senior Lecturer in Māori and Indigenous Development, Jason King, the mini-course includes basic Te Reo Māori, Māori mythology, waiata (songs) and cultural customs. It includes with a noho marae (weekend-long marae experience). 

    King describes the course as “the base of a tree, from which branches and leaves grow”. 

    “The course puts indigenous goggles on students,” he says. “It opens them up to areas of discussion with their own indigenous people.

    “My ultimate aim is to connect us not only globally, but indigenously.”

    Thanks to their connection to Māori via AUT and the Noho Marae programme, Champlain College made a formal connection to their own indigenous people, the Abenaki tribe. A representative from the Abenaki was present at the unveiling of Te Hononga. 

    Many US students choose to keep in touch after they return home through the student-led Whānau Councils. These were first established in 2010 after students from Europe were so moved by their AUT marae experience that they set up their own group to maintain their connection to New Zealand and each other. There are now three Whānau Councils across Europe and the US actively supported by AUT.

    For the European council’s 10-year anniversary, members of group are planning to return to New Zealand – this time with their partners and children.

    “We tell them during the Noho Marae, after studying in New Zealand you are whānau for life,” King says.

  • From the Acting CE: Open for business – international education and the vocational reforms

    I am therefore very pleased that Education New Zealand has the opportunity to contribute and support the work of the establishment unit for the New Zealand Institute of Skills and Technology (NZIST) and the reforms.

    The NZIST will bring together the existing 16 ITPs to create a unified, sustainable public network of vocational education.

    As we all know, New Zealand enjoys a strong reputation for work-ready education and industry training.

    The reforms should build on New Zealand’s reputation as a high-quality choice for international students. They should also help develop a strong national identity for the vocational sector, representing a significant opportunity for providers to attract overseas students.

    They should also help ensure a regional spread of students across New Zealand, with a lot of benefits for the regions – including skills, diversity and revenue.

    I’m also very pleased to see that the reforms recognise the importance of international education. One of the seven IST work streams focuses entirely on it.

    The International Education Working Group is chaired by Michelle Jordan from Venture Taranaki. Members are drawn from across nine institutes of technology/polytechnics and one skills organisation.

    We are working closely with the group to support their work. And we’ll continue to work with them through the journey to share our experience and expertise.

    The NZIST has a huge challenge ahead. And the changes to the country’s vocational education system will take time to embed.

    While there is much happening at the provider level, the message for the sector and international students is that it’s business as usual. ITPs are open for business. And ENZ is continuing to market them. Students can continue to enrol at ITPs for 2020 as usual, including for multi-year programmes. Existing programmes, qualifications and credentials will continue to be recognised internationally.

    The changes will take time, but they are an investment in the future of New Zealand’s vocational education and international education sectors.

  • Talented young Kiwis awarded PM’s Scholarships to Asia and Latin America

    This round of scholarships supports 252 recent graduates or current students to undertake study, research or internships at institutions in Latin America and Asia, including Brazil, Mexico, China, India and Japan.

    Awardees are in a range of fields including languages, law, business, health, sustainability and the arts. They will attend for periods ranging from four weeks to one year.

    The scholarships enable a wide range of educational experiences, including: a cultural exchange and internship programme for Māori and Pasifika graduates in Vietnam; a global business and innovation programme at the Chinese University of Hong Kong in Shenzhen, China, for a group of undergraduate business students; an internship with an Indian charity supporting street children and another with the United Nations Office for Sustainable Development in Korea. 

    ‘’These scholarships enable talented young New Zealanders to enrich their education offshore, adding international experience and global perspectives to their qualifications,’’ Chris Hipkins said.

    “The quality of the awardees, from all over New Zealand and from a wide range of tertiary institutions, is impressive. I am sure they will serve as excellent ambassadors for our country.

    ‘’Longer term, the international networks and cross-cultural skills that they bring back home will enhance and strengthen our future workforce. Their experiences benefit New Zealand at a national level and improve our ability to engage and connect with Asia and Latin America.

    ‘’The Prime Minister’s Scholarships support the Government’s goal of a thriving and globally connected New Zealand through world-class international education,” Chris Hipkins said.

    Of the successful applicants in this round, 114 will travel on an individual scholarship and 138 will travel as part of a group. They come from a range of tertiary institutions nationwide, including the University of Auckland (69 awardees); Victoria University of Wellington (41); Massey University (40); Whitecliffe College of Arts and Design (16) and the Southern Institute of Technology (nine). There are also 10 recipients from the education NGO, TupuToa.

    Here is the full list of PMSA and PMSLA recipients from this round (2019-2020 Round One).

    The total value of the scholarships offered in this round is $1.9m. Information on past PMSA and PMSLA recipients can be found here.

  • Kiwi scholars to gain international skills

    The scholarships, funded by the New Zealand Government and administered by Education New Zealand, support recent graduates or current students to undertake study, research or internships at institutions in Latin America and Asia, including Brazil, Mexico, China, India and Japan.

    Awardees in this round (2019-2020 Round Two) are in fields including languages, law, business, health, sustainability and the arts. They will attend for periods ranging from four weeks to one year.

    The scholarships enable a wide range of educational experiences, including: a cultural exchange and internship programme for Māori and Pasifika graduates in Vietnam; a group of arts and design students who will attend a course on the economic and cultural significance of modest fashion at the Islamic Fashion Institute in Indonesia; and an internship with an Indian charity supporting the health and education of street children in Jaipur.  

    ‘’A key aspect of international education is sending New Zealand learners out to the world to gain all-important global skills and experience,’’ says ENZ’s Director Student Experience and Global Citizens, Partnerships and Marketing, Sahinde Pala.

    “When they return, they bring new perspectives and expertise with them, helping to grow New Zealand’s international networks and inter-cultural awareness.’’

    Most awardees undertake programmes that can be credited back to their New Zealand qualification. Similarly, international internships are usually part of their home institution’s work integrated learning programme, Sahinde says.


    PMSA and PMSLA support the Government’s International Education Strategy: to build a thriving and globally connected New Zealand through international education.

    A total of 2,399 young New Zealanders have taken part since the programme was launched in 2013, initially for Asia (PMSA), and extended to Latin American (PMSLA) in 2016.

    The full list of PMSA and PMSLA recipients from this round is on the Education New Zealand website: PMSA recipients and PMSLA recipients. Information on past PMSA and PMSLA recipients can be found here.

    How to apply

    There are two rounds of PMSA and PMSLA scholarships offered each year, in August and March.

    Applications for the next PMSA and PMSLA round (2019-2020 Round Two) open from mid-January 2020 and close on 30 March 2020. More information on the application process can be found on our website. Institutions are encouraged to contact ENZ to discuss potential group applications.

  • Happy birthday, SIEBA!

    Today, the Schools International Education Business Association (SIEBA) has over 400 member schools. This membership hosts about 90 percent of all of international students at New Zealand schools.

    As recently as 2014, there was no peak body for schools wanting to participate in international education – but not for a lack of demand.

    In the same year, Education New Zealand (itself only three years at the time), set out to co-create Strategic Roadmaps with the sector. One of the biggest things to come out of our consultation with the schools sector was that they wanted their own peak body.

    ENZ’s Business Development Manager for the schools sector, Mary Camp, described ENZ’s early investment as a “no-brainer”.

    Now, SIEBA is completely self-sufficient financially, but ENZ’s relationship with them remains strong.

    “Our relationship has been constructive, transparent and extremely successful,” Mary says. “Some examples of are work together are the Korean and Chilean government scholarship schemes and educating agents offshore.”

    When COVID-19 turned the world upside down, the importance of SIEBA was underlined.

    “SIEBA has been the go-to for the schools sector,” Mary says. “We are working closely with SIEBA, like all of our peak bodies, as part of the COVID-19 recovery and sector rebuild.”

    SIEBA Executive Director John van der Zwan says he is immensely proud to have had the opportunity to work with New Zealand’s schools community.

    “I am constantly encouraged by the work people do in the school sector, and by the amazing commitment that schools make to support the young students from around the world that come to New Zealand to learn,” he says. “All of us at SIEBA are so fortunate to be a part of a very special group of people in a very special area of education.”

    John has been involved with the organisation since its inception. He was part of the working group that prepared a proposal seeking support from the school sector for a peak body in 2014.

    To help SIEBA get off the ground, John was appointed as Interim Executive Director in 2015 before moving into the permanent role a year later.

    “The biggest achievement for me has been working with some wonderful people to get SIEBA to a position where we are recognised, not only for how we support schools day to day, but for being prepared and ready for the role we are about play in leading our sector through the biggest crisis we will ever face,” he says.

    “The SIEBA team has worked hard to know our business, build a strong reputation, develop valuable relationships with our partners and be in a great position to lead the work that lies ahead.”

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