Established in 2000 (with a lineage going back to 1895), Auckland University of Technology (popularly known as AUT), is a university situated in Auckland, New Zealand. AUT provides programs in Art, Business, Law, Design and Creative Technologies, Health and Environment, etc.
AUT has different faculties divided into various parts of Auckland and there are shuttle bus services between the three official campuses. Auckland is a beautiful place for a university. It may be costly for international students and hence, there’s always some part-time work recommended. Buses are known to be always on time and if they are 5 minutes late, the driver apologizes! People at the bus-stops or bus drivers are ready to guide you if you don’t know which bus to take. Their civic sense is largely appreciated and there are no safety grills around the houses or shops.
Known for its inspiring and beautiful architecture, the five faculties of AUT are spread across three campuses in Auckland namely City, North, and South campuses. The City campus is situated in the center of the city. The most academic units on this campus are situated on Wellesley Street East including the school of business, law, design, culture, society, etc. The four-storied Central Library here holds 2,45,000 volumes of books and journals. Vesbar, which is a student-owned cafe place is a common location for students to meet after class. Other facilities include bookstores, art galleries, student apartments, etc. The North campus is located in the northwest suburbs of Auckland. Including the faculty of health sciences, this campus includes the sports and fitness facilities alongside recreational center. This campus also offers a library, student services, counseling, bookshop, food outlets, etc.
Opened in 2010, the South Campus offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in business, management, computer sciences, etc. It has all the other facilities like the other two campuses. They also have three locations for specialized subjects: Radio, AUT Millennium, Astronomical Observatory and Refugee Education.
Most students go for off-campus housing because the university accommodation may be way too expensive. If you look for shared accommodations, you can find one in $300 or a little higher. Central Business District (CBD) on either side of the Queens Street is a good place to live for students. These apartments are well built and properly insulated during excessively cold times. Living with other students adds to the social life here.
The weather in Auckland is completely unpredictable. It may seem sunny in the morning and it may shower by the afternoon. For that matter, it may rain at any time during the year. The weather in that sense is the same for the whole year. Winters see an average of 17-degree Celsius. It is never too warm.
The faculty to student ratio here is 8:15. Students find it difficult to deal with exams and find the classroom teaching inadequate for the same. Also, you have to pay $800 per exams and then pay the whole fee for the subject again. Hence, not passing exams becomes more painful. Especially for average students from their home country, they are known to buckle up and work harder. The faculty doesn’t believe in spoon feeding and they will expect you to go out of your comfort zone as far the research on the subject is concerned. There is no way you can do with copy-pasted assignments. The syllabus is a differentiating factor here because it gets you industry-ready.
There are various kinds of financial aids available at AUT such as loans, budget planning services, etc. Hardship Funds can also be availed by students where their food, rent arrears, utilities and some other expenses are waived off. Up to NZ$1000 per semester are waived off for students experiencing financial problems. There are two scholarships available specifically for international students: New Zealand's International Aid and Development Agency Scholarships and New Zealand International Doctoral Research Scholarships.
Another way to save money is to work part-time. If you work part-time, you are protected by the minimum wages act by which you need to be paid at least $7 per hour. Students suggest that one may have to find a balance between part-time work and studies.
The median annual income of students from AUT is $47000. Students see that the workplaces look for the following skills: communication skills (86%), problem-solving skills (87%), and critical thinking skills (87%). 60% of the students get jobs within 3 months. One should look at proper visa regulations before banking on it entirely.
Some business owners may like to employ people of their own ethnicity but that may be true for a lot of places in the world. Students say that many of the international students don’t get jobs because they don’t know how to write a proper CV and are not presentable enough. Also, a CV for New Zealand job market may be very different from many other countries.
Having 20,000 (full-time) students under them, this qualifies as a large cohort. 4200 of the students (24% Asian students) are international students from 94 countries. The gender ratio is 61: 39 (females and males respectively). There is also a diversity in the age in this university. The age range goes from 21 to 40 with 10% of the population being 40 years old. There are various student organizations and clubs that one can participate in, supported by AuSM. There are also various diversity clubs such as the Humanitarian Club, AUT African Students Club, Indian Flocks at AUT, etc. There are various programs held that become an orientation stage for students of various cultures to interact with each other. Students suggest Otara flea market, Maori Van (food caravans), Cook Island Beauty (fried donuts and potato salad), The Mates Rates (fried chicken joint).
Known to be one of the third best in New Zealand, AUT will not be a disappointment if you can afford to study and living in Auckland. You also need to learn how to work very hard at part-time jobs plus the classes. The weather could be unpredictable but you'll have to stay strong.