22 September 2022 at 10:30 am

Prime Minister welcomes international students

Recently arrived international students from institutions across Auckland mingled with Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Education Minister Chris Hipkins, following a welcome ceremony hosted by the University of Auckland (UoA) on 2 September 2022. 

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Students made the most of the opportunity to chat with the Prime Minister and take selfies.

One of many welcome events around the country since our borders reopened at the end of July, the ceremony was attended by more than 70 students, as well as representatives of UoA and Education New Zealand Manapou ki te Ao (ENZ). It was an emotional moment for some of the students, who had been waiting a long time for the opportunity to study here.  

Minister Hipkins presenting a Tū Ngātahi pin to international student Kyeongmin Kang from English Language Academy

Tū Ngātahi pins were presented to international students Petchpiangpor Sueasuwan from Western Springs College; Kyeongmin Kang from English Language Academy; and Ankeeta Karmakar from UoA by the Prime Minister, Minister Hipkins and UoA Vice-Chancellor, Professor Dawn Freshwater respectively.  

ENZ Chief Executive Grant McPherson explained the significance of the Tū Ngātahi pins, which you can read more about here.  

The formal welcome was followed by morning tea, with further exchanges of Tū Ngātahi pins and opportunities for photographs. 


Professor Dawn Freshwater, Vice-Chancellor at University of Auckland, with university student Ankeeta Karmakar.

International student Malina Grube from the University of Auckland spoke about her experiences here, and her involvement in the kākahu project.

Michael Steedman, Kaiarataki at the University of Auckland, demonstrated a 3D-printed conch shell as part of his welcome to guests – a metaphor for new arrivals and new opportunities.

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