Christine Prasad

Christine is from Fiji and studying towards a Master of Science in Engineering Geology at UC, which involves both coursework and research.

I really wanted to study at UC because the programme has highly practical applications. There’s a skill shortage in this area back in Fiji so I know it's a way that I can really make a difference.

The hands-on learning experiences at UC have accelerated her skill development.

It’s been a huge learning curve! Doing a Master’s programme that involves research has provided in depth research skills including carrying out my own field investigation and laboratory testing.

Christine is planning to use the knowledge she’s gained at UC to make a difference back home.

Fiji is a developing country where a lot of infrastructure development is taking place including residential and commercial buildings and road construction. Because it has a skills shortage in engineering, it has to get experts in from overseas. I hope to contribute to the country by taking the knowledge and skills gained at UC and applying these in real life situations. My research into slope stability is directly applicable to Fiji, where landslides along highway corridors is an ever-present hazard, often leading to road closures.

For now though, she’s enjoying everything Christchurch and Canterbury have to offer.

Christchurch is a nice place to study because it's very quiet. There are lots parks in the city and plenty of tramping areas, beaches and mountains nearby. I'm here with my husband and we have been traveling together in New Zealand, enjoying the beautiful views.

She says help is readily available at UC, from personal advice to the wider university resources.

There’s an Academic Skills Centre in the library. They’ve helped me with my writing and literature reviews. There’s a careers centre which has been really great for updating my CV. My program supervisors are very approachable . You can contact them anytime with questions. The scholarship advisors have been great too and are always making sure we are doing well.

Christine has really enjoyed the social aspect of UC too.

I've made lots of friends here. My fellow Master’s students are always around for a coffee and a chat. People at UC are really friendly. There are lots of campus events and I love going bowling on the weekends with my friends.

Out of all the places on campus, she says her happy place is the RecCentre.

My favourite place at UC is the gym. They have free classes like yoga and Pilates, and small group training as well. It's amazing. I try and go three times a week. It's all included with your tuition, and makes for a great way to burn off stress and get a happy buzz.

Christina wholeheartedly recommends UC as a great study experience.

It is a good university. The accommodation is excellent and you can literally walk everywhere, from your home to the uni to the supermarket to the park. You can find anything and everything in Christchurch. There are even Fijian shops if you want food that tastes like home. I really like it here – I think anyone would!