Of all the universities in New Zealand to choose from, Chulainn Mabbett-Sowerby and Hollie Keightly, who attended secondary schools in Auckland, decided the University of Waikato was their best option.

Chulainn is studying towards a Bachelor of Social Sciences majoring in Social Policy and Indigenous Studies, while Hollie is studying a conjoint degree in Health, Sport and Human Performance, and Communication Studies.

For Chulainn, who is based at the Tauranga campus, the decision was all about building a better life for his whānau. He was also drawn to the university’s strengths in Māori and Indigenous Studies.

“I spent a few years after school working in low-paying, labouring jobs and then I decided I want my whānau to have more than I was given. I was born in Tauranga and really love the lifestyle in Tauranga and the Mount, so it was a great fit for me.”

Waikato’s new state of the art, award winning campus in the heart of Tauranga offers a unique environment for study that has attracted students from all around New Zealand and the world.

“This is the best place for me to follow my passion,” says Chulainn. “I am driven to see real policy changes made towards limiting our impact on climate change, health, justice and the economy. The degree offered by Waikato will help me fulfil my passion.”

University of Waikato student, Hollie Keightly

For Hollie, who studies at the Hamilton campus, the flexibility to combine her passion and interest through a conjoint degree was a key factor, as was the idea of a smaller university “I like the study environment at Waikato. Everything is here on one campus, it’s easy to get around and it feels like a real community. There’s always something to get involved in and it’s easy to catch up with friends between classes.”

Waikato’s Hamilton campus is a beautiful space with lots of nature, excellent facilities and plenty of places to gather socially.

“My aim is to finish my conjoint degree then make my way overseas. I want to work in sports public relations and media, so my two degrees are the perfect foundation to help me follow my dreams. In the meantime, Hamilton is a great place to live.”

The University of Waikato offers programmes and an environment, in both Tauranga and Hamilton, that helps students follow their passions. Applications for 2020 are open.

Make the choice to move to Waikato. We’ll help you make your positive change.

For more information about studying at the University of Waikato, click here.