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MIT student wins scholarship to study in Scotland

Friday, 30 June 2006

MIT student wins scholarship to study further at Scottish university

As New Zealand welcomes spring in September one Manukau Institute of Technology student will be preparing for the Scottish autumn.

Shannon Loney, a Bachelor of Visual Arts student at MIT’s Manukau School of Visual Arts (MVSA), has won a New Zealand Undergraduate Study Abroad Awards scholarship to attend one semester at the Duncan Jordanstone College of Art and Design at the University of Dundee in Scotland from September.

While extremely excited about achieving the scholarship, Shannon, of Bucklands Beach, finds it amusing that when she told friends and family about it, their first response was to comment on how cold it will be in Scotland.

“’It’s going to be cold’, was the first response from everyone,” Shannon laughs.

Regardless of the weather, Shannon expects a warm welcome in Dundee and she cannot wait to experience the UK as a student. “It will make such a difference going over as a student rather than working. The experience will be closer to how normal life really is over there.”

As an arts student, Shannon is naturally excited that she will have some of the world’s best art galleries at her doorstep while in Scotland. “Being close to many of the art centres in Europe will be amazing.”

Shannon plans to take an illustration course and looks forward to learning from lecturers who are involved in the UK art scene.

During her time overseas Shannon hopes to establish valuable contacts. “Making contacts in the UK and possibly Europe now will be a great advantage for when I establish myself as an artist.”

The scholarships, funded by the New Zealand Government and administered by Education New Zealand, aim to encourage more Kiwi students to complete part of their studies overseas, while raising the international profile of New Zealand tertiary providers.

Shannon’s enrolment is part of a student exchange contract between the university and MIT. Under the formal exchange agreement, the tuition fees Shannon has paid to MIT will cover the courses she takes at Dundee. This allows Shannon to put the $3000 she won in the scholarship towards her travel and living expenses.

MIT has exchange programmes with a number of tertiary providers around the world, which provide access for students to leading educational institutions abroad, says MIT international student adviser Pip Schollum-Manase.

Such exchange agreements, combined with the New Zealand Undergraduate Study Abroad Awards, mean there are more opportunities opening up for students from institutes of technology and polytechnics to pursue some study overseas, says Pip. “We want to encourage more MIT students to take advantage of these opportunities to study abroad.”

Shannon agrees there are now more chances for MIT students to win scholarships for overseas study. “This is a good time for MIT students to go after these scholarships and head out there.”

Entries for the next round of the New Zealand Undergraduate Study Abroad Awards close on 20 November and are selected on both the academic and ambassadorial qualities of applicants.

ENDS

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