'The Civil Eng degree offers the chance to pursue an area that is in demand all around the world...'
Studying towards a Bachelor of Engineering with Honours in Civil Engineering
UC’s reputation for providing a top ranked Civil Engineering degree was what initially drew Vivian to UC, saying that ‘UC is the best university in New Zealand for studying Engineering’.
‘UC offer brilliant facilities and human resources for helping Engineering students study. We now have the fantastic Engineering Core, with professional computer suites, drawing offices, as well as kitchen facilities. The Civil Eng degree offers the chance to pursue a variety of career goals within an area of study that is in demand all around the world.’
Alongside this, Vivian has also enjoyed the practical nature of her Engineering studies, allowing her to explore a different side of her degree.
‘We had a “building bridge” project last year. It was the first time in my life to complete a whole real project from design, construction to final testing. It was a really precious and exciting experience for me, and from this I also realised the importance of good team work. We could share our ideas and criticise them to find the best suitable solution, which was brilliant and more efficient.’
Vivian has taken full advantage of the support UC provides to all students, something she feels has contributed to the success of her studies so far.
‘As an international student from China, with English as my second language, I always visit the Academic Skills Centre. When I wrote my first report I attended several weekly class by the ASC, which were very useful, and even now in my third year at UC, I still go to the ASC nearly every time before submitting my reports and essays.’
Through personal growth at UC and increased confidence, Vivian has stepped outside of her comfort zone and take up the vital role of President of the UC Chinese Student and Scholars Society (UCCSSS).
‘We are the biggest Chinese students and scholars association at UC, welcoming all Chinese students, those who are interested in China, or students hoping to make more Chinese friends. We organise different types of activities every month, including a welcome party, and Chinese badminton competition, as well as the annual Dragon Boat Festival Celebration.’
First-hand experience of being a student in an unfamiliar environment has made Vivian passionate about the positive effect UCCSSS can have for UC students.
‘We aim to help Chinese students and scholars in many different kinds of situations, such as settling down in Christchurch, study consultation, and to create a safe, fun and friendly environment while they study here and provide a place for students to show themselves.’
Outside of her academic commitments, Vivian has a wide variety of hobbies and enjoys the balance between these and the workload that comes from life as an Engineering student.
‘I really love cooking. I can cook delicious Asian food and create latte arts. I also play the ukulele and flute. During time off I enjoy volunteering to help the local community, I have volunteered for St John Youth and was also a Campus Ambassador for the UC Open Day.’