Andre. Science & Arts.

What inspired your double degree in computers and Japanese?

I wanted to work in the game development industry but I also love studying Japanese and didn’t want to give it up. I’m thinking about becoming a translator in the gaming industry and if that doesn’t pan out, my degree is opening up lots of other doors too.

Sounds like a great combo! And you’ve been to Japan?

Yes, I was one of six students picked by the Japanese Department to go on a 10-day cultural exchange to Japan. I went to Tokyo and Nagasaki to learn about peacebuilding, history and culture. We visited significant sites like the Atomic Bomb Museum and the Peace Park, and we met with Japanese students working to promote the abolition of nuclear weapons.

What was your favourite memory from that trip?

Going to the top of Mount Inasa, which is voted one of the top views in Japan. We saw the sun set over Nagasaki. It was an amazing experience. I felt like I was at the top of the world!

What courses have you enjoyed most at UC?

CHCH101 has been awesome. It’s a course that came out of the actions of the Student Volunteer Army after the earthquakes. For the lectures you go on weekly excursions to the city to see new buildings and pitch in on various community initiatives. It's really engaging to be part of the community even as a student. You almost forget that it's a class!

"I think Christchurch is the future of New Zealand. It’s a mix of heritage and brand-new builds, so you get to experience two worlds at once."

How would you describe Christchurch to someone from elsewhere?

I think Christchurch is the future of New Zealand. It’s a mix of heritage and brand-new builds, so you get to experience two worlds at once. I really enjoy exploring the city on foot, following the Avon River past markets and playgrounds. There are always new spots opening and, as a bit of a foodie, the new cafes and restaurants popping up all over the city centre are awesome.

Tell us about the leadership opportunities at UC.

There are lots of them. When I started, I was part of the Emerging Leaders programme which helped me settle into uni and gave me a great stepping stone to get involved. I’ve also been a student mentor, providing guidance and support for newcomers and welcoming students from overseas. UC really does its best to care for all students, even those far from home.

What makes UC special?

All the opportunities available, from overseas exchanges to leadership, internships or even just small things on campus. They provide a chance to differentiate yourself and choose your own path to go down. Whether you’re super outgoing or prefer a quieter option, there’s something for everyone - and they’re always adding more!