More than 200 international students will be formally welcomed to Hamilton on Wednesday at event hosted by Hamilton City Council and Study Waikato.
The event, to be held at Hamilton Gardens Pavilion, signifies the importance of international students to Hamilton’s education providers and will involve students from countries across Europe, the Middle East and several Asian nations.
More than 3000 international students attend primary schools, intermediate schools and high schools and tertiary education providers across the Waikato.
The students will meet Hamilton Mayor Andrew King, who says he regards events like this as one of the privileges of his role as the city’s elected leader.
“Often the students wouldn’t meet the mayor or elected leader of their town, city or region, so there is a sense of excitement among them,” Mayor King says.
“I find they’re often keen to chat for a few minutes and there’s usually the need to pose for plenty of photographs, too!”
Mayor King says international students are an important contributor to the economy of the city and New Zealand as a whole. In recent years, Education New Zealand and New Zealand Government reports have estimated international students contributed about $4B a year to the country’s economy.
“Through international student enrollments at Waikato University and Wintec, Hamilton’s getting a decent slice of that economic benefit,” Mayor Andrew says.
Wednesday’s event starts at 10.30am, runs for about two hours, and includes performances, a mihi for the international students, plus kiwiana food and treats.
Media are welcome to attend.