12 Mar More Filipinos are considering New Zealand as an Education Destination
The Realities of Education in the Philippines
Most of us are not aware that there are actually a number of substantial jobs available in the country. Since the boom of the outsourcing and BPO industry in the country in the late 90’s, it has been gaining popularity to those looking for jobs, especially to undergraduates, new graduates, those who are waiting for the results of their board examinations, etc. Why? Because despite of this fact, unemployment still remains to be a daunting, continuing problem in the Philippines. Upon scratching the surface of this seemingly critical imbalance, we will immediately realize that it’s because only few qualify for those elusive jobs – say, those who can speak fluent English or those who can endure working at night and sleeping during daytime. Most of the graduates that our schools have produced have acquired skills that are not what employers are particularly looking for. The root cause boils down to either these two:
- Schools have not prepared our workforce enough for specialized skills – where most of the graduates fall; or
- Schools have produced graduates that are, in reality, not in demand in our country, but rather in other countries – where most of our graduates, particularly in nursing and HRM, fall.
The challenge of having graduates who lack the skill for gainful employment is currently looked into and being addressed jointly by government agencies such as TESDA (Technical Education and Skills Development Agency), CHED (Commission on Higher Education), and DOLE (Department of Labor and Employment). In 2012, our education industry launched a new education program called K-12, making our education system somehow at par to that of the education system overseas, in the hopes of bringing better education to the younger generation. However, this is not one that I would like to address, but rather the challenge being experienced by those who have already graduated, have been placed in jobs that have no relation whatsoever to their courses in College, and are now seriously looking into going abroad to practice their professions.
The problem of not getting successful entry to other countries lies, among others, to the lack of qualification systems that meet international standards. This has a direct effect especially to graduates who seek employment abroad only to find out that their professional qualifications and education background are not recognized internationally. Studying for another year or two in another country seems to be the emerging factor to being able to successfully go abroad and work there for most students. The minimum age requirement for diploma courses of most first world countries is 18 years old, given that there is a sufficient 12 years of formal education gained in the originating country. Young graduates may also have to consider taking courses in other countries to meet the educational requirements for employment abroad.
The Advantages of Studying in New Zealand
One of the most popular destinations for international education for Filipinos for the past 10 years is New Zealand.Now, why New Zealand?
Aside from the fact that New Zealand is known for its pristine landscapes that provide students the backdrop for extreme outdoor activities such as bungee jumping, skydiving, and water rafting during weekends or holidays, there are seven (among the many) compelling reasons as to why Filipinos should/are now considering studying in New Zealand.
1. New Zealand provides new experiences
New Zealand has so much to offer when it comes to entertainment. There are always live entertainments from international artists, theater, ballet, and opera. There are festivals here and there for every occasion and every season – arts, music, food and wine, dance, and film. There is a wide range of activities you can do for your night life – visit clubs, bars, late-night cafes, and do karaoke. There are also big screen cinemas, art houses, and art decos. New Zealand is also famous for international celebrations – take, for example, their New Year celebration. They make it a grande celebration because they are the first country to see a glimpse of the sun during New Year. More than anything, they have a wide selection of food from different international styles. What else is there to think about?
Sheep racing at Wanganui A&P show. Photo / Bevan Conley
2. New Zealand offers a lot of exciting outdoor activities and sports
Did you know that Bungee Jumping originated in New Zealand? Yes. New Zealanders – or more commonly known as “Kiwis” – are outdoor lovers and loves to invent different sports as well. Among the other contributions of Kiwis in the sports world are their participation in Rugby and Cricket. They also love Sailing, as Auckland is considered as “The Sailing Capital”.
Bungy jumping towards the Kawarau River in Queenstown, New Zealand © Alexandra1977 | Dreamstime
3. New Zealand is clean and beautiful country.
Every country has tourist spots. New Zealand just happened to have many… scattered all over the country! Just like what our previous clients said, every scenery is postcard-worthy. The landscapes and scenery in New Zealand are also, apparently, movie-worthy – as it has been a location for famous films such as Avatar, Narnia: Prince Caspian, The Lord of the Rings, and The Hobbit. With a country as beautiful as this, I’m sure you will be able to forget about your home sickness in no time!
Hobbit houses from the movie set of the Hobbiton in Matamata. Photo / Christine Cornege
4. New Zealand is a safe and secure country.
According to an international survey done by the Global Peace Index, New Zealand is the third safest and most peaceful country in the whole world! Can you imagine that? Aside from New Zealand being generally a safe place, the government of NZ also takes into serious consideration the safety and well-being of its international students (especially minors). They have instituted “The Code” which states that all education providers must adhere to are strict guidelines on the standards of care they must provide to international students living and studying in New Zealand. These guidelines are also monitored and implemented by the government.
5 .New Zealand provides excellent, internationally-recognized, and high quality education.
The New Zealand government has set-up internationally-recognized quality assurance on its education industry and one of the government-appointed bodies to monitor and implement this is the New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA). It approves and registers all courses and national qualifications offered by different schools to make sure that all their programmes are always of high quality. It utilizes the British Education System, and thus its qualifications are recognized as equivalent in other commonwealth countries (54 in all) such as Australia, Canada, Singapore, and the UK. Out of all these commonwealth countries, New Zealand is the most cost-effective education destination. The schools are also skills-based; usually schools have partner industry players or companies that tell them which skills are in-demand – the schools, in turn, will develop specific modules to fill those demands and to train the students so they will become employment-ready.
6. The opportunity to earn even while studying.
Student visa holders may work to a maximum of 20 hours a week during the semester and may work full time during holidays and school breaks. As long as the number of working hours is within bounds and you keep at par with the academic performance requirements, availing of such privilege shouldn’t be a problem while studying in New Zealand.
7. Strong student support
Schools in New Zealand have high professional standards, supportive learning environments, and a strong focus on student welfare. Most international students in New Zealand go for IT and health courses, both of which have a high demand for employment as well as permanent residency.
To discuss more about studying in New Zealand and the best pathways available for interested students, specifically those under the fields of Information Technology, Nursing and Healthcare, Animation/Graphic Design/Digital Art, an Education Seminar will be conducted by the Ahead International Education, one of the five registered companies recognized by Education New Zealand (ENZ) in the Philippines. There will be presentations about New Zealand, time allotment for question-and-answer, and one-on-one coaching done by ENZ trained agents.
Take advantage of this opportunity! Register online by clicking this link: http://bit.ly/1ELFMNc. Other contact details may be seen below.
- Habito, Cielito F (Aug. 5, 2013). Addressing the Jobs Mismatch. Philippine Daily Inquirer.
- Immigration New Zealand http://www.immigration.govt.nz
- Manila Bulletin (July 14, 2013). TESDA Addressed Job-Skill Mismatch.
- Palacio, Rose (May 28, 2007). Who Says there is Job Shortage in the Philippines? Davao Today.http://davaotoday.com/main/2007/05/28/who-says-theres-a-job-shortage-in-philippines/
- PNA and Philippine Times of Southern Nevada (May 9, 2013). Government steps up programs to address job-skills mismatch.
- Rediff.com (Sept. 4, 2009). Why New Zealand is a popular study destination.http://getahead.rediff.com/report/2009/sep/04/career-study-abroad-new-zealand.htm
- Study Options (2013). Why Go? Seven Good Reasons to Go.http://www.studyoptions.com/why_go/#.UjqHxn_z6hp
- Technical Education and Skills Development Authority. Skills Shortages and Training Needs of MNCs in the Philippines (Issue No. 20). http://www.tesda.gov.ph/program.aspx?page_id=65