Mayor’s welcome to Waikato International students 2016


Waikato Education International is a regional education group includes cities as Hamilton, Cambridge, Taupo, Thames. There are more than 3000 international students studying at Primary, intermediate and high schools, Wintec, Waikato University and at private tertiary institutions in the Waikato region. These students come from all around the world, including China, India, Saudi Arabia, Korea, Japan, Thailand, Vietnam, Russia and throughout Europe. They are represented by Waikato Education International, an umbrella organisation for international students in the region.

Waikato is a region of New Zealand with a population of 381,000 people. Its main centre is the City of Hamilton, which has the mighty Waikato River running through it. Hamilton city is located 1.5 hours from New Zealand’s largest airport. Waikato people are known for being very open and friendly.

Hamilton is a city of education, business and scientific research. It boasts fine cuisine and cafes, excellent shopping, theatres and outdoor recreation facilities.

Shirley Huang, the President of Waikato Education International, says:

Waikato Education International is a regional organisation established to support all people and institutions in the Waikato region involved with International education. We are a very active organisation and offer the following:

  • Collegiality and networking
  • Professional development opportunities
  • Shared marketing initiatives
  • Annual Photo Competition for students
  • Annual scholarship to assist with regional retention
  • Working with HCC to raise the profile of international education within the community and to ensure that Hamilton and the Waikato is seen as a destination of choice for international students.
  • Annual international agents inbound visit to get them familiar with Waikato region and actively promote the region
  • Onshore agent seminars to provide information and training to the agents based in NZ and to promote the region to attract more international students

Hamilton Mayor Julie Hardaker will officially welcome international students on Tuesday 9 August.

As indicated by the Mayor, Hamilton is a popular destination for international students and some local high schools have a long history of providing education to these students. “It’s a big step for these young people to leave their homes to live in New Zealand, but it is a wonderful opportunity and experience. The students bring a vibrancy and diversity to our community which we love sharing in.” “It is a privilege to welcome them officially to Hamilton. We are proud to be a home away from home for the students who are studying both here and at schools and tertiary institutions throughout the Waikato. These students make a significant contribution to our local economy and during their time here they are able to develop their English language skills and immerse themselves in our Kiwi culture. New Zealanders are known for their hospitality, and as a city we are proud to welcome people from all over the world.”

In previous years, a representative group of new students has been welcomed by the Mayor. Around 100 students will attend this welcome. The majority of the students will be reasonably new to the city. Some may have been here since the beginning of the year and others may have arrived in time for the start of the new semester. The youngest will be Year 7 intermediate school students. Some may bring siblings and other members of their families.

Most attendees will regard meeting the Mayor as a privilege that would not be extended to them in their home countries.