Fijian Indian student Jainesh Prasad graduated last week from the University of Canterbury with a Master of Engineering Studies. Today he shares his story.
Graduation is the end of one chapter and the beginning of another. First of all, I would like to congratulate my fellow graduates. It has been a hard, but ultimately very rewarding year. We have made new friends, learned new things and explored a new country. For me personally, being offered a placement at the University of Canterbury meant studying in one of the leading earthquake engineering schools in the world. As a practicing structural engineer, it was both a pleasure and a privilege. Having survived the taught Master’s programme and experiencing earthquakes first hand here at Christchurch, I am eager to take this knowledge and practise it at home in Fiji.
At this point in time, I would like to thank the New Zealand Government for providing opportunities to Pacific Students to further their education through NZAid Scholarships. I would like to thank my family who have always inspired me when I felt homesick, my friends, who have kept me company during our many visits to the library and my lecturers for their enthusiasm and patience. Special thanks to the Student Development Team and Pacific Development Team as they have been great in organising events to support Pacific students in all manner of ways to help progress through their studies.
My advice to current and future UC students is to work hard and work smart, but ultimately treat this as a positive experience. You will be stressed at times, as stress is inevitable. The key is, however, to use it to stay on top of your deadlines and not let it control every second of your time here. Most important of all, share your experience, meet new people and make new friends.