Category Archives: IRO

Host UC international students for a Kiwi Summer Day

Did you know that UC has approximately 1100 on-campus international students who have not been able to return home to their families for the past two summers, given NZ’s ongoing border closures? These students have committed to staying in Aotearoa so as not to jeopardise their studies with us.

This summer the International Relationships Office wants to ensure all international students who are staying in Christchurch over the break feel welcomed and supported by our UC community. We want to encourage our students to have some fun and get to know new friends in the UC community.

How can you help?

We welcome UC staff to invite a couple of international students to take part in a summer activity with you and your whānau. This could be a BBQ at your home, a walk at Sumner beach, or even a day trip to Akaroa. Perhaps students could join you for a community event in Christchurch e.g., Christmas Carols at Hagley Park – it’s up to you. This is a one-off activity, designed to fit with your existing summer plans. There is no expectation of ongoing interaction with the students, though we hope that you’ll now have another friendly face to see around campus.

Please note that we ask any staff who sign up, to host two international students. Pairing students up gives them a level of comfort and confidence. The IRO will connect you to students who are not in the same department as you, to ensure no conflict of interest.

If you’re interested in taking part in this programme please complete the form here before 10 November 2021.  IRO will be in touch after the deadline with more information, guidelines for H&S etc.

If you have any questions don’t hesitate to contact candice.houghton@canterbury.ac.nz

Thanks for helping to ensure UC’s international student whānau feel supported and connected to our community this summer. You are truly engaging in the UC Values!

Immigration NZ Visa Processing Update

We  have received recent communication from Immigration New Zealand extending the current visa processing suspension for offshore visa applications. The extension is until 6th February 2022. This means that if students are not part of an exception cohort they are not able to apply for a visa before this time.

However:
• People who meet the border exception criteria, or who are in a QFT (Quarantine Free Travel) zone are not affected by the suspension
• The suspension can be lifted if the border restrictions change

Please note this does not prevent the possibility of further execption cohorts or QFT zones being created prior to 6 February 2022. UC continues to participate in working groups to advocate for future exception cohorts.

IRO have contacted both current and prospective students to convey this message. Here is the message sent to offer students.

With this change, opportunities for international students to  enter New Zealand for studies in 2022 are limited.  In light of this announcement, we are working with International Deans and marketing teams to confirm online offerings for 2022 as soon as possible.

Ngā Mihi,
IRO