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NZ: initiative offers flexible pathway options

UK-based pathway provider NCUK has partnered with Education New Zealand to enable students in more than 30 countries to access education at the country’s eight universities while borders remain closed.

NZ minister of education Chris Hipkins said international education will play a vital role in the the country's economic recovery. Photo: NCUK

"International education can help build relationships that benefit both the students who choose to study here, and New Zealand"

Backed by more than NZD$300,000 in scholarships a year, the Global New Zealand Education Pathways initiative will begin in 2021, and offer three NCUK pathway qualifications, either online or in-country.

“International education will play a vital role in the recovery of the New Zealand economy”

“This ground-breaking initiative gives students around the world more choice and flexibility when it comes to how and when they gain a high-quality New Zealand education,” the country’s minister of education, Chris Hipkins, said.

“It also exemplifies New Zealand’s high-quality education, which is agile, future-focused and student-centred.”

The government announced a $52m recovery plan for international education to respond to the global health pandemic earlier in 2020. The NCUK/ENZ initiative is supported by $10m allocated for new “future-focused” products.

“The government recognises that international education will play a vital role in the recovery of the New Zealand economy from Covid-19,” Hipkins added.

The partnership is both the biggest university sector-international education collaboration to date, and the first time the government has facilitated international students beginning their New Zealand study offshore, ENZ chief executive Grant McPherson highlighted.

“As the world recovers, international education can help build relationships that benefit both the students who choose to study here, and New Zealand. Reciprocity needs to be at the heart of international education,” McPherson said.

Universities New Zealand chief executive Chris Whelan emphasised that the $300,000+ in scholarships put forward by the country’s universities represented a commitment to developing innovative solutions that connect the country to students globally.

The initiative “offers an excellent pathway for international students who are looking to study at New Zealand’s high-quality universities”, Whelan said.

The qualifications rolled into the initiative include NCUK’s International Foundation Year program, International Year One program and its pre-master’s program.

“NCUK qualifications provide students with the flexibility to start their education journey in their home country and then choose when they travel to study at any one of New Zealand’s world leading universities,” said the organisation’s chief executive John Brewer.

“We are delighted to be partnering with the New Zealand government and New Zealand universities on this initiative, adding to our 30-plus-year track record in successfully placing more than 35,000 students in world-leading universities worldwide,” Brewer said.

Intakes for the qualifications begin in March 2021, and students completing the qualification will start their New Zealand-based or online study in 2022 or 2023.

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