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Student story

Kien Ngo

07 December 2023

Bachelor of Commerce in International Business, with a minor in Japanese


Why did you choose UC?

Before uni, I did three years of high school in Christchurch and was exposed to UC quite a lot during that time. I fell in love with the city and people, so I decided to stay and continue my education.

UC also offers great scholarships, and being awarded three of them contributed to wanting to continue my learning journey here.

 What do you like about your degree and major at UC? 

The International Business major is good fundamental knowledge for my future career, especially as the world gets closer and works together more. I also love learning languages, and UC’s degree is flexible enough so that I can continue pursuing my Japanese studies at the same time.

How do you find the support at UC Business School?  

It’s easy to get help if you need it. UC Business School is really supportive, and the Internationalisation Team is very diverse, so they can relate to us international students. The Business School also holds lots of events, which really helps with making new friends for those of us new to New Zealand or Christchurch. And if we need someone to talk to or if we’re struggling to plan our degree, we can have our Kaitoko (Student Advisors). 

What is life in Christchurch like? 

Living in Christchurch offers a good work-life balance and makes focusing on your study easy. The people are really nice – they’re always happy to say hi and chat.

There’s also a lot of beautiful natural scenery around the city and the public transportation is amazing, which makes it easy to get out and connect with nature.

The living cost is relatively low, so things like rent, food, and activities are also more affordable.

What do you enjoy doing when you are not studying? 

I love trying new things – new food, new restaurants, or visiting new places in Christchurch and around New Zealand.

I am also serving as one of the violin leaders in the Christchurch Youth Orchestra. We have weekly rehearsals and several concerts a year, which helps me meet new friends and build connections. 

How is your time at UC preparing you to be career-ready? 

There are a lot of opportunities for me to grow and learn at UC, even outside the classroom.

Participating in the clubs and applying for exec roles provides a really good environment to develop soft skills that you need for a successful career, like leadership and time management.

The internships and global exchange opportunities allow us to directly experience and connect with the industry in New Zealand and overseas.

Does anything else stand out in helping prepare you for a successful future? 

The Tūhono programme at UC Business School helps international and domestic students mingle, connect, and come together to learn about our different cultures and embrace our differences. It provides a good understanding about how to work in multicultural settings, which is really important because I’d like to work for an international company. 

How does your part-time work benefit you? 

Apart from extra pocket money, I am also gaining experience in interacting with different people. I learn how to talk to customers and develop time management skills. It teaches me how to be professional and understand the working culture in New Zealand. 

Would you recommend UC to other international students and why? 

Yes, I would. Christchurch is a really good city that allows you to focus on your studies. UC’s campus is compact and central, so it’s easy and convenient to access all the different facilities.

UC also offers a range of scholarships for international students, which reduces financial pressure. And for those looking to study business or commerce related courses, UC has a really good business department. 

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