Life of An International Student in New Zealand
For most of us, the main goal to venture abroad for higher studies is a bright career and a better future. Having said so, the entire journey of moving abroad is blended with mixed feelings, epiphanies, and learnings. You are now exposed to diverse cultures and lifestyles. Multicultural, environmentally friendly, picturesque, are just a few words to describe New Zealand, rightly known as the ‘’Paradise of the Pacific’’. In every semester students flock here to experience life, the Kiwi way. We asked our students to share some of their favorite experiences, here’s what they said!
Let’s start with what Jaspal Singh has to say. He migrated to New Zealand in February 2019 to complete a Post Graduate Diploma in Business from Unitec Institute of Technology. Currently, he works as a Senior Manager at Aaja Nachle NZ. He relates his journey to New Zealand and his real-life experiences here….
Sitting at my office desk in Auckland, I often think about how I got where I am today.
“Growing up in a small suburb of Navi Mumbai, at a time when traveling and trips to foreign countries were still out of the norm, I decided that I would go and explore the world. Immigrating to New Zealand particularly was never on my mind. Just after my twenty-third birthday and during my first job, I started to narrow down countries for further studies. For the next five years, things were not quite in my favor, one after another kept me occupied. However, at last, I was able to sort my life and fuel my dream to venture and study abroad. That was the auspicious beginning of my New Zealand dream—not exactly what I had imagined a few years back when I excitedly picked up my bags.”
The Big Move
He further goes on, “It feels like just yesterday that I landed here in Auckland on a Student visa in February 2019, with butterflies in my stomach and a glimmer of hope in my eyes to “make it big” here in New Zealand in my way. Two plus years down the line since arriving from Mumbai and counting, I am still proud to call Auckland my home away from home. I decided to attend college in Auckland to guarantee that I was making the strongest possible professional choices. My career in Mumbai was beginning to pick up, but I wanted to see what else was out there. I remember being thrilled by the prospect of studying abroad, but I also felt uncertain. I had made my travel plans on short notice, so I was not financially prepared. But I had been accepted to one of Auckland’s best and fastest-growing colleges, and I was not going to turn down an opportunity to study in New Zealand.
Money, not the only struggle
I arrived in Auckland with only 2,000 NZD —enough to get settled. After a few weeks of attending college, I registered with an employment agency for part-time work. Soon a potential employer called me for an interview and eventually got the job. With the money earned at my first job, I was able to cover rent, groceries, and other daily needs. I was also gradually adapting to my new culture. Four months later, I felt much more comfortable. I had a goal, and that was where I kept my focus. Because of my good grades and my human resources experience back home, I got an opportunity to work as an Office Manager. They offered an opportunity to work at their Ponsonby office in Auckland. This is how my professional career path in New Zealand truly got started. In my day-to-day work, I made every effort to add value. My skills and competencies are fully utilized. About a year after I began working full-time, I applied for residency.’’
Living my dream
“Getting up in the morning and heading to my office job, I sometimes think about the days I struggled. I cannot help but smile. Along with my professional success I have also kept my hobbies and passion alive. Since the time I arrived in New Zealand, I started camping across North Island and recently explored my love for drone photography.’’
A flexible life
Another international student, Ankit Vaghela, happily tells us what he fell in love with. Ankit lives in Wellington, New Zealand. He completed a Post Graduate Diploma in Information Technology from Whitireia New Zealand in mid-2020. He is currently employed with Concentrix, New Zealand. Read his interesting life as a student in New Zealand-
Kia Ora! I’m Ankit. A 26-year young proud Wellingtonian who has caught Kiwifever for a lifetime.
“I came to Aotearoa in 2019 through AJV Global. I had been planning to come to this heavenly country since 2015. However, due to financial constraints, it took me 3 years to materialize my plan to live a kiwi dream.
I am a tech-savvy and aspiring globe-trotter. Since coming to New Zealand, my personality and preferences have changed drastically. In India, I was an introvert and preferred to stay within my bubble and mostly spent time at home. However, in Aotearoa, I have developed new hobbies such as hiking, trekking, socializing and I am now an ambivert. Whenever I have a holiday or a day off lined up, I shoot off to hills around Wellington Region and explore. This amazing country has got a lot to offer to everyone. I was fortunate enough to have found my field job within a few months of graduation. I highly recommend New Zealand to those who prefer a laidback and easy-going lifestyle.’’
The best advice I can give to an international student to live a satisfying life abroad is to keep an open mind. The best part of living abroad is that you learn to adjust and become more resilient to changes. When faced with an unforeseen event, you know how to find ways to cope with it, sometimes in the most creative manner. Landing at the airport in New Zealand from your home country is not the end of your migration journey. It is the beginning of a new process of discoveries, learning, and transformations that results in growth.
All the best!