A visiting Indian professor teaching at the Wellington Institute of Technology (WelTec) says New Zealand is an incredible place to study.
“There are a lot of Indian students here in New Zealand and a lot here at WelTec. My students would love to come here,” says Poonam Sharma, who teaches business and has been visiting New Zealand for two months.
Poonam is Professor and Dean of International Relations at Jaipuria Institute of Management in India. The privately-owned business school and WelTec signed a memorandum of understanding in Delhi last year. This is the first year of the collaboration.
“WelTec is a wonderful institute. I’ve been at their Auckland campus for quite some time and have also visited all the Wellington campuses. I’ve seen the business courses, engineering, creative, the whole lot. The students have all the facilities available to learn,” says Poonam.
“In every course that I visited there was hands-on experience for students. They’re definitely industry-ready by the end of the course. That’s the beauty of practical experience.”
Poonam says she’s had the opportunity to teach some classes as well as sit in on classes to see teaching in action in New Zealand.
“It’s more of a practical approach, much more practical and with more hands-on learning. Even little things like a class I attended on marketing saw the lecturer take students through a company’s website pointing out what worked and why things were done a certain way. It’s good to have something like that right in front of you.”
“We do a lot of case study work at my institute so I taught a class focused on a case study on Coca-Cola in India. It worked well and the students really enjoyed it.”
Poonam’s visit is the first step towards a closer collaboration potentially involving Indian students studying in New Zealand and Kiwis experiencing a different culture with an exchange programme. The highly-regarded Jaipuria Institute offers similar programmes with other institutes including Rutgers University in the United States.
“I’ve now been here for two months teaching and also exploring opportunities in research and collaboration. There are possibilities in student exchanges or short-term programmes. Jaipuria has done a lot of exchange programmes and we know what students are looking for. It’s very customised.”
Jaipuria Institute of Management is accredited by leading agencies and offers a two-year postgraduate diploma in management equivalent to an MBA. The specialist institute has 1500 students at four campuses in different cities in India.
“I hope others, teachers or students, get to have the opportunity I’ve had. New Zealand is a beautiful country. Everything is so good here, it’s wonderful.”
The Wellington Institute of Technology has a number of partnerships with institutes throughout the world.
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