2 December 2020 at 9:00 am

Innovative ENZ universities’ partnership creates pipeline of international students

The partnership with the UK-headquartered University Consortium (NCUK) and 81 of their accredited Study Centres will deliver a world-class New Zealand education across the world, and develop a pipeline of international students to study in New Zealand when the time is right.

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Education New Zealand (ENZ) and New Zealand’s eight universities have today announced a partnership that will enable university students in more than 30 countries to begin their study towards a New Zealand university qualification at home while borders are closed.

“This innovative 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,” Education Minister Chris Hipkins said.

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

The partnership with the UK-headquartered University Consortium (NCUK) and 81 of their accredited Study Centres will deliver a world-class New Zealand education across the world, and develop a pipeline of international students to study in New Zealand when the time is right.

The Global New Zealand Education Pathways initiative is part of the Government’s Recovery Plan for international education, announced in July. The plan invests $10 million over three years towards innovative products and modes of education delivery that will enable the international education sector to not only recover from the shock of COVID-19, but transform to a more diversified, sustainable future state.

“The Government recognises that international education will play a vital role in the recovery of the New Zealand economy from COVID-19,” Minister Hipkins said. “Prior to COVID-19 it was our fifth-largest export earner and generated around 45,000 job nationally.”

ENZ Chief Executive Grant McPherson said the partnership is a first for New Zealand.

“It’s the biggest university sector-international education collaboration to date, and it’s the first time that the Government has facilitated international students beginning their New Zealand study offshore.”

“It’s also an important move to support New Zealand’s international education sector, which has been devastated by the impacts of COVID-19. We are piloting this initiative with the university sector and will then use our findings to inform our approaches with other sectors.”

“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.

New Zealand’s universities are also offering more than NZD $300,000 in annual scholarships dedicated to students carrying out one of the new qualifications.

Universities New Zealand Chief Executive Chris Whelan said New Zealand’s universities were committed to developing innovative solutions that connect New Zealand to students globally.  

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

“International education is a vital component of our sector, bringing benefits to our domestic students and research community, as well as to our universities. We look forward to developing this further and to welcoming these students to New Zealand in the future.”

From December onwards, NCUK’s Study Centres will start promoting pathway qualifications to study at all of New Zealand’s eight universities, with intakes beginning in March 2021. 

The pathways initiative enables international students to begin study in their home countries towards Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees at any of New Zealand’s eight universities.

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