NEW ZEALAND, NEW LAND OF OPPORTUNITY: LIFE AFTER STUDY

Studying in New Zealand opens up many opportunities for international students, and one of them is the availability of jobs for international graduates. There is a demand for skilled professionals in the country and a skill shortage – thus, many companies are willing to pay top dollar for employees with specific skills. The industries that are facing skill shortages include Agriculture and Forestry; Engineering; Health and Social Services; Recreation, Hospitality and Tourism; and Transport. For more information, a full list of Long Term Skill Shortage for 2016 can be found here.
 
WHY SHOULD I STAY ON TO WORK IN NEW ZEALAND AFTER STUDY? 
Depending on where you come from, working in New Zealand could be a great opportunity in itself due to the country’s economic status (For example, RM3 in Malaysia equals to NZ$1). However, there are plenty of other reasons to pursue a career in New Zealand aside from the strong economy, such as:
 
1) DESIRE FOR A BALANCED LIFESTYLE
 
International surveys have constantly shown that the country is envied for its work-life balance. New Zealanders believe that there is a time for work and time for living, with employees offering over 20 days of annual leave for you to relax and/or see the sights New Zealand has to offer.
 
2) SAFETY AND SECURITY AS STANDARD
 
Compared to highly developed countries such as Japan and UK, the population density in New Zealand is much lower, which leads to lower rates of pollution and crime. According to the Global Peace Index, the country is rated 4th most peaceful country out of 163 countries. The citizens enjoy a freedom of movement and speech thanks to strict rules in place (the police are not allowed to carry personal firearms) and there isn’t any particularly dangerous wildlife to worry about.
 
3) EMERGING JOB MARKET
 
As mentioned above, employment rates have been gathering steam in the past three years. However, while employment conditions are expected to remain strong, the Government forecasts the growth rate will decline for the next three years to 2018. Nevertheless, if there is a decline in employment in your home country, New Zealand is a good place to bet your future on; especially you have the qualifications and experience for a job that’s on the a skill shortage list.
 
Below is a testimonial by Monica Mu, an international student from China, who is one of the many students who have opted to stay on to work in New Zealand:
 
 
WHAT IF I DON’T WANT TO WORK IN NEW ZEALAND AFTER STUDY?
 
International graduate students who prefer to return home for work need not worry about finding a job as well, since New Zealand universities’ qualifications open doors to many opportunities. All the country’s universities are internationally recognised, and eight of them are among the world’s top 500 in the 2015/16 QS rankings. Employers around the world know that an education in New Zealand often produces a well-rounded individual who is capable of thinking creatively and flexibly, with sufficient practical and theoretical knowledge. Best of all, you don’t have to worry which universities are the best, because the education system is highly regulated for quality assurance – potential students need only worry about what courses they want to pursue, and where (it can be in a city or town that they are interested in or somewhere closer to home).
 
HOW MUCH CAN GRADUATES EARN ON AVERAGE?
 
According to Careers NZ, the median income from wages and salaries for both full-time and part-time jobs in June 2014 was about $45,000 a year (or $865 a week) before tax. Not surprisingly, the highest-paying jobs are specialised jobs such as doctors, information technology systems specialists, in-house law counsellors, and communications managers. For a more detailed breakdown, see the one by The Chopras, which lists Average Incomes by Year according to a graduate student’s Field of Study. Like most countries, job-seeking graduates are paid according to their qualifications – the higher your qualification, the more income you earn.
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