New Zealand Speeds up Student Visa processingPosted on: January 27, 2010 | http://getahead.rediff.com
Following reported delays in the student visa application process for countries like Australia and the United Kingdom, the New Zealand High Commission in New Delhi has initiated various steps to streamline student visa clearance.
But that is not the ony reason why Indian students continue to flock to the country. "Recession is a temporary phase and our students in New Zealand are a much happier lot on account of jobs and the quality of education they are getting," says , Immigration New Zealand's (New Delhi) former visa officer, during the course of an interview with RMS Atwal. Mr Malhotra is currently heading Koru Visa, Educational & Visa Consultants for New Zealand.
Excerpts from the interview:
What is the present New Zealand study scenario in light of Australia and UK situation?
I can only say that students are still going to New Zealand. The situation which has happened in Australia is quite unfortunate. Also, a huge number of students have gone to the UK. However, many of them are coming back from the UK because they are not happy with the current situation there as reported by the media here. In New Zealand we have not seen such incidents and haven't seen any student coming back just because they were unhappy. Students in New Zealand are getting part-time jobs within one to three months of their arrival there. And, they are adjusting well in New Zealand. They are happy in the schools they are studying in.
As per the updates I have received from students we have sent, I think everything is fine with them and they would prefer to settle down there on completion of their studies.
Right now, security is the main concern for Indian students and their parents. How would you allay their fears?
There is no such thing as lack of security in New Zealand and overseas students need not worry on that aspect. As per worldwide security surveys on quality of living in New Zealand, the country is rated among the top places in the world where the crime rate is very low. No wonder, overseas students are a happy lot over there and students are flocking to the island nation.
So, can we say the number of Indian students to New Zealand has increased in the recent past due to the UK and Australia situation, or due to the quality of education in that country?
As far the number of students is concerned; the number has not gone up as such. In fact, it has gone down if we compare with the same period last year.
The main reason is many students prefer to go to the UK at the moment because of 'no IELTS' requirement for that country and the application process is much simpler for the UK.
Talking of 'No IELTS', is New Zealand too thinking on those lines just to push up their students' intake for the sake of higher revenues?
No, I don't think so. The IELTS is required, especially for students from Punjab [ Images ] -- who have studied under the Punjab board. New Zealand is not considering relaxing the entry requirement for students just to boost the numbers.
In what way has the global recession affected New Zealand education and its work culture?
What New Zealand has done to address the recession is they have tried to accommodate the current workforce. So, people have not lost their jobs as such but their working hours have been reduced till the situation improves. This shows that New Zealand cares for its workers. Their philosophy is, instead of firing employees just reduce their hours. Something is better than nothing.
But what about students? How has recession affected them?
Recession has had an effect on students too. Students need some time to adjust to the NZ environment and the work culture, but most students do get jobs within one to three months of their landing in the country.
Being a former visa officer, would you say the immigration rules have become tougher during the last few years?
I haven't seen any change in student immigration policy since my days in the High Commission. Paperwork securitisation has always been strict in the mission and is of very high standard. There is no relaxation as far the application processing is concerned. My suggestion to Indian students is that they should keep all their paperwork in order. And no 'fraudulent documentation' should be there along with the application. I don't think there should be any problem in seeking a visa if you follow their immigration policy and submit the application with correct paperwork.
Have you seen any recent student visa rules changes?
Following complaints from education consultants regarding undue delay in visa approval, if the Immigration New Zealand finds an application with a 'positive profile' they send it to their office in Bangkok or in New Zealand itself. Consequently, students are getting their visas in 15 working days.
Could you name certain courses which are in high demand these days which can make the students easily employable on study completion?
Most of the diplomas do lead to permanent residency as soon as students are able to get a job which is related to their field of study in New Zealand. Currently, courses in hotel management and cookery are in high demand. However, looking at the present scenario, all other courses like information technology, business and management are in high demand as well.
Any advice to students?
I must say that when students file their paperwork, they must make sure that all their documents are genuine. Fraudulent documentation can land them in trouble. Once caught, students won't ever be able to go to NZ. After all, truth always prevails. Good luck!
In the recent past, there has been a high outflow of Indian students to pursue management education abroad. Three-quarters of the 147 business schools across the world reported an increase in admission applications from India. Primarily, because Indian students are looking for high degree of sophistication, educational quality and exposure to a globally accepted and recognised curriculum to give their career a global edge. Demand for Business graduates has increased since 2005 and despite the economic slump, application volumes continue to climb.
A very crucial question, which still pertains, is why students prefer going global for their management degrees? What impels them to zero in on GMAT preparations and MBA admission consultancies? “The answer to lies in two most obvious factors, international reach and network.” says Kaushik Barua, head of operations. Global Reach, an organisation that offers recruitments, Training and promotion. He adds, “Indian institutions are still young in nature in comparison to their international counterparts.”
, Education Consultant with Koru Visa, differs, “There are many students who fail to get admissions Indian B-schools. For them, going overseas is the last resort. Also, there are many who do not have the required percentage to seek admission in indian institutions wrho apply abroad. It is easier and cheaper for them to pursue a foreign degree despite securing low marks.
Students look for business programmes that are flexible in nature. This allows them to explore diversified job opportunities and best practices in related industries. Besides, even a ticr-II US based B-school offers 100 per cent scholarships while Indian counterparts offer negligible or no scholarships.
“Those with a good score can even get 100 per cent scholarships. We had a student from Banaras Hindu University who got a full fee waiver and also earned extra money every month by working as a research assistant.” says Nirmal Pal. Head. Management Programme. Penn State University. Pennsylvania.
Experience is must
When looking for MBA opportunities abroad, a three to four years working experience is a must. “It has been seen that 98 per cent of students who opt for foreign universities have work experiences as universities look for applicant quality rather than sheer quantity,” shares Barua. United Kingdom (UK) has also recently adopted a policy of quality difference or checks called the Edu Trust for Institutions to maintain applicant quality.
Top management institutions in United States (US). Canada, Australia, New Zealand and UK offer working visas for limited periods. If a student works in a foreign country, they are at a vantage point when seeking employment in India. This also accounts for a major reason why Indian students seek international degrees.
At times, these visa policies can also be a hindrance for students. It is so because countries like UK and US have tough visa policies, while in New Zealand, immigration rules make it difficult to return immediately after one gets the degree. Recently. Australia has also tightened their visa policy.
Options at a glance
B-schools like The Yale School of Management conduct education and research in leadership, economics, operations management, marketing, entrepreneurship and organisational behaviour. The Stephen M. Ross School of Business of University of Michigan, offers highly ranked course in Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA). Master of Business Administration (MBA) and Execu-live Education programs. Along with The Fuqua School of Business of Duke University, Wharton School of Business. Singapore. Canada and Australia, are also seeking attention students. These offer diploma courses and job oriented programmes.
According to industry body, The Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM). about five lakh Indians are studying abroad by spending about $ 7.5 billion. Reason being, foreign countries look at education as export and India has is a good market. There are about 1.550 business schools in India producing over 100,000 management graduates every year. But it is not enough to meet the growing demand for management education. The increasingly globalised nature and context of business in the Indian economy require an expanded horizon of management and leadership, which can be achieved through continuous improvement and upgradation of capabilities, skills and mindset of management graduates.
By Mohini Mishra
Study AbroadPosted on: January 19, 2011 | http://www.tribuneindia.com
Destination Canada, New Zealand
As the Canadian government’s Students Partners Programme (SPP) for India rolls into the third year, chances are that the number of students will continue to swell in Canadian community colleges, considered to be the cheap and best. “Acceptance of applications for Canada student visa under the SPP programme are most likely to continue this year too and the country will remain a popular study destination for ‘genuine’ Indian students as over 20,000 visas are expected to be issued this year,” according to Jaspal Singh of CAAN World Consultants, Jalandhar.
After choosing his level of study, like undergraduate or post graduate, a student has to apply for different universities or colleges which have their own admission procedures. The following are the common documents that will be required to be furnished along with the visa application: English Proficiency Test score sheets (IELTS, TOEFL) Academic certificates; Character certificates; police reports to show that you are not engaged in any criminal activities; Recommendation letters from teachers; and Demand drafts for the applicable fees. After a fee is paid and college/university accepts the student, they will send him the letter of acceptance. Then he can start preparing the required documents for the visa.
Submit the complete application kit to the immigration section of the Canadian High Commission. All the documents must be original and photocopies notary attested. “There is a tick-sheet on our website (www.cic.gc.ca) with a short list of required documents. If you send us those documents, with the forms and fee, or submit it at any one of our Visa Application Centres all over India, a visa officer in the High Commission or in our office in Chandigarh will assess it within a few days,” according to David Manicom, Minister-Counsellor, Citizenship and Immigration Canada, the Canadian High Commission in New Delhi. “The large majority of applications are finalised within three weeks, even including medical results, and many within one week. We don’t think it could be any more “streamlined”. It’s very simple. We assess applicants, not agents,” adds the head of Canada’s immigration programme in India.
Completed Student Application form, official letter of acceptance from university or college, a valid passport for at least one year before entry of Canada. TOEFL/IELTS score sheet and a bank draft.
Proof of funds
Every candidate must have sufficient financial resources to pay tuition fee and all living expenses. After the complete application forms along with all required documents are submitted an interview with the Canadian Visa Officer may be required. If required, student will be advised in writing of time and place for it. The High Commission will issue medial instructions. The applicant must clear the medical examination. Students can visit www.cic.gc.ca for further information.
To apply for a student visa the applicants first need to fulfill the admission requirements of the education provider for the particular course, including the IELTS.
The provider will then issue the student an offer of place which is required when you lodge the student visa application with New Zealand immigration.
Students will also need to submit their primary and secondary school documents and if a student has completed his degree or any other courses from private institutes then those documents will also be required.
Students will need to show evidence of funds for their course fee and NZ$10,000 per year for living expenses, if the students are going for a course which is of a longer duration then a payment plan needs to be submitted.
Students will need to meet the health requirements and also provide a police clearance certificate.
Other requirements are passport, photographs and application fee of Rs 7,900.
“It is very easy to get a student visa for New Zealand as long as the applicant meets the policy requirements and is a positive profile student. At the same time remember, the NZ High Commission does not at all tolerate fraudulent documentation,” advises , Director, Koru Visa, Chandigarh.
“Positive Profile” applications are determined by a combination of factors listed below:
- Good academic record — over 60% aggregate in year 10 and 12 and over 50% aggregate in subsequent tertiary qualification;
- IELTS score of at least 5.5, or evidence of having met the English language entry requirements for the course of study in NZ, whichever is higher.
- Student’s immediate family’s verifiable evidence of funds to meet the educational and living expenses in NZ, including paper trail to explain any recent high value deposits in accounts; or
- Evidence to demonstrate that they are opting for the Funds Transfer Scheme
- No more than two immediate family members as financial guarantors
- Verifiable Evidence of regular source of sufficient income of financial guarantors;
- Intended course of study relevant to qualifications and/or work experience or clearly explained in the statement of purpose
- Demonstrated career progression opportunities
- A gap year after study of no more than 12 months
- Meeting the health and character requirements.
By R.M.S Atwal