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Can We Solve Brain-Drain by Importing Students?

Can We Solve the Brain-Drain by Importing Students?

Education New Zealand: Media Release 28/08/08

“There are a lot of smart, young people out there, who are very keen to end up living and working in New Zealand”, says Stuart Boag, Communications Manager for Education New Zealand. “If we want to get them into our workforce, we need to begin by attracting them to our educational institutions.”

Between August 28 and September 2, representatives from 27 of New Zealand’s tertiary educational institutions will be in India, scouting for new students at a series of New Zealand Education Fairs.

Many of the students who come from India to study in New Zealand are hoping that their education here will open the door to immigration. With ongoing concerns about our own graduates “jumping the ditch” to Australia and other countries, it makes sense to train students who actually want to remain in New Zealand to fill some of our skills shortages.

Migrants who arrive with training from overseas often struggle to find work or upgrade their qualifications after arriving in New Zealand. Getting their education in our country means that their skills will be relevant in New Zealand, and up to our standards. Kaye LeGros, Business Development Manager from Whitireia Community Polytechnic says, “We have a number of international students who have come to study and very quickly moved into work in their respective fields of study after graduation.”

Education New Zealand, the umbrella organisation for education exporters, organises a promotional programme of educational fairs in more than 60 cities around the world each year. In India, the fairs have been running successfully for many years, attracting a few thousand potential students each year.

“The Indian people value family networks and it is common to have parents, cousins, and other family members coming to the fairs to meet with potential school staff to discuss study and pathway options.” Says Kaye LeGros. The fairs are an opportunity for interested students and their families to find out about programmes of study in New Zealand, meet people from a range of institutions, and learn about the immigration process from Immigration New Zealand representatives.

The current series of fairs will take place in Pune, Hyderabad, New Delhi and Chandigarh.


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