New Zealand is one of the most stunning places in the world. A small island country by the southwestern sea, New Zealand does not lose when it comes to the natural sights one can’t find just elsewhere in the world. Part of this charm is the distinctive Māori culture that imprints itself around the country and its society. It is also through this culture’s core values that many of New Zealand’s policies were created in mind, reinforcing its dedication to improving the lives of its people and making it the highly developed country it is today.
Part of New Zealand’s charm is its education, boosting the country towards the top destinations for international students each year. Capitalizing on the country’s quality of life reputation and internationally acclaimed tertiary educational access attracting many aspirers, scholarships in New Zealand are everywhere. For this article, we will be shortlisting noteworthy programs we believe would definitely be worth looking into.
Living Costs in New Zealand for International students
Applying for a study visa in New Zealand is unique in that it requires international students to present proof that they can financially support themselves for a year. This is typically in the form of scholarship/sponsorship letters or bank statements as evidence you can financially support at least your first year. The New Zealand Ministry of Education generally recommends prospective students to be capable of securing at least $1,250 for every month of their study period (or $15,000 per year). It should be noted that this is a minimum benchmark standard and expected costs will most certainly differ across different cities and universities. Take Victoria University, for instance, which suggests students set budgets of at least $18,000 to $27,000 each year.
One of the biggest costs to factor in is rent. Accommodation costs in New Zealand aren’t cheap. The national median rent for a room was $215 per week in 2020, approximately averaging $800-$950 per month. Expected food expenses range between $68 to $72 as well while utility costs vary greatly depending on provider and living arrangement. On the brighter side, public transportation services typically offer generous student discounts. Free wifi is also made available in central areas such as Auckland or Wellington.
Can international students work in New Zealand?
International students may work in New Zealand during their respective study periods. Work hours are capped at 20 hours per week during the term, which may be lifted to allow full-time work during holidays and breaks. On the other hand, international doctoral and masters’ students do not have any work hour restrictions.
Like most countries, New Zealand prohibits self-employment of student-visa holders and also emphasizes that engagement in commercial sexual services is forbidden, stressing violation of any of these conditions will lead to deportation.
Top Universities in New Zealand:
New Zealand is among the first countries that come to mind for many whenever “quality education” is mentioned. With all eight of New Zealand’s universities featuring within the top 500 of the QS World University Rankings in the last six years and boasting a unique educational framework that has proven itself effective over the years, it is no wonder kiwi higher education finds itself well-reputed worldwide.
Among these internationally recognized educational institutions are the University of Auckland, the University of Otago, and the Victoria University of Wellington.
Best Scholarships in New Zealand
1. MFAT New Zealand International Scholarships
The Māori concept of manaakitanga – hosting, respecting and caring for people – is central to New Zealand’s culture and it is through this core value that the New Zealand Scholarships program was born. Through manaakitanga, New Zealand welcomes students from far and wide to its land to enlist them in a partnership with the country, supporting them as they pursue their academic goals.
Recipients of this New Zealand scholarship will enjoy a full tuition bursary, a living allowance amounting to NZ$491 per week, a settling-in allowance of NZ$3000, medical/travel insurance, a tutoring fund, thesis/research support, and a travel grant.
2. Asian Development Bank – Japan Scholarship Program (ADB – JSP)
The ADB-Japan Scholarship Program (JSP) is one of the better-known international scholarships available for prospective international students from the Asia-Pacific. This program recruits at least 140 new students each year, enrolling each in one of its 25 partner institutions in nine countries including the University of Auckland in New Zealand.
This scholarship in New Zealand covers tuition fees in full, housing costs, medical insurance, and travel. Scholars are also given a monthly living allowance and financial aid for miscellaneous studies-related costs such as instructional materials, preparatory courses, or special thesis expenses.
3. Wellington Doctoral Scholarship
The Victoria University of Wellington opens up applications thrice a year as part of its efforts to encourage doctoral study in its institute. This scholarship recruits around 110 new scholars worldwide each year, fully funding their studies over the course of three years or the duration of their stay. Aside from a tuition waiver, Wellington Doctoral scholars are also set to receive a stipend amounting to $27,500 to supplement their living and study costs.
This scholarship is exclusive and considered one of New Zealand’s most prestigious scholarships with its stringent criteria, with the vast majority of successful applicants having strong academic records and excellent academic references or records of publication in high quality journals.
4. Massey University Doctoral Scholarship
The Massey University Doctoral Scholarship is another university-sponsored scholarship program that awards the best of the best incoming students of an admission cycle, with the most exemplar among its recipients awarded further with more benefits under the Vice-Chancellor’s banner.
This scholarship is normally open to both domestic and international students and available to full-time and part-time doctoral candidates. This scholarship will cover tuition fees of scholars for a maximum of three years in addition to a stipend amounting $75,000 overall and may be held in conjunction with other scholarships that award up to $25,000 yearly.
5. University of Otago Doctoral Scholarship
The University of Otago is another highly-regarded academic institution based in New Zealand, and like most of kiwi universities, also offers generous scholarships in New Zealand for its exemplary doctoral program applicants. The University of Otago Doctoral Scholarship is awarded to about 200 new students per year and may be applied to any time of the year, available only to those seeking to obtain their first doctoral degrees.
Applicants will be selected according to merit and research potential. Those accepted into the scholarship program will be awarded a $27,000 annual stipend in addition to a tuition waiver for up to 36 months.
6. University of Auckland Doctoral Scholarship
A flourishing institution that only seems to achieve greater heights in recent years, the University of Auckland is one of, if not the most competitive kiwi university to be offered admission to. This extends to its scholarships, which pick the best among a sea of already highly-qualified individuals capable of entering New Zealand’s premier higher institution.
Among these New Zealand scholarships is the University of Auckland Doctoral Scholarship, which provides doctoral candidates tuition fee waivers and a tax-free stipend of up to $28,500 for a maximum of 36 months. This scholarship is open to all incoming graduate students and exempts scholars participating in paid work required for their programs (i.e. internships) from the additional 500 hours scholars are allotted.
7. NZ-GRADS New Zealand Global Research Alliance Doctoral Scholarship
Perhaps the most desirable scholarship in this list is the NZ-GRADS New Zealand Global Research Alliance Doctoral Scholarship, with its generous benefits that include a tuition aid (up to a total of $10,000 NZD per year), a tax-free living stipend of $28,000, medical insurance, a visa application grant, a travel grant, as well as a book and thesis preparation allowance of up to $1,500. This New Zealand scholarship is open to prospective international students hailing from developing countries and is limited to six slots per year.