Our Central Campus hosted a delegation from the Mexican government in February.
This was a ministerial group from Jalisco province, which made time to divert from their tour specifically to visit the campus, and view the activities that are representative of the region.
This visit follows meetings in mid-2019 with the Central Campus staff in Mexico. Alex Huffadine (Market Manager for Latin America) and Carolyn Patchett visited Mexico to begin building relationships with a view to adding Mexican students to the growing number of Latin students at the campus.
The Central Campus has been steadily growing the number of programmes to cater for Latin American student. Specially land based programmes with English are popular. The Chilean government in particular has been strong in supporting these programmes in order to build capability and capacity in their younger population. The Mexican delegation has visited to look to also engage in these programmes.
The programmes are unique, as they enable learners to come with low level English and build skills in technical studies related to New Zealand’s rural sector. They also build English capability. Students have pre-planned paid work experience provided. Mixed together this is a powerful set of learning in a New Zealand rural setting.
The Jalisco province, where the officials are from, is the strongest agricultural and horticultural producing region in Mexico. The group has been touring New Zealand to view our rural sector and the productivity we demonstrate. It is hoped Otago Polytechnic will see students from Mexico join our rural suite of programmes over the next year.
The ministerial delegation was exposed to a range of learning at the campus, as well as experiencing a connection with our industry in the wine and cherry sectors with visits to Amisfield winery, 45 South Cherry exports and a range of other Central Otago export properties.