It was a big day for celebration as staff tuned in virtually to watch students at the University’s joint institute in China cross the stage as the first graduating class.
After fifteen years of partnership with Zhejiang University City College (ZUCC), both institutions further strengthened their relationship in September 2017 by launching a new joint institute in Hangzhou China.
Now, four years later, the University of Waikato and ZUCC cheered on as 202 graduates collected their two new degrees, one from each institution.
Watching from afar via a livestream link were members of the University’s senior leadership team in their own graduation regalia, and a number of pre-recorded messages of congratulations were also played during the ceremony including a mihi whakatau from kaumātua Taki Turner, and messages from Vice-Chancellor Professor Neil Quigley and Chancellor Sir Anand Satyanand.
The graduation ceremony was also attended in China by Consul General Stephen Wong, and Education New Zealand Director (Greater China), Miranda Herbert.
“Although we were unable to attend the celebration, it was an honour and pleasure to be able to share it virtually with our first graduating class,” says Professor Neil Quigley, Vice-Chancellor.
“Each of the graduates has worked so hard to reach this point, and being able to recognise their hard work during the graduation was a privilege.”
The students graduated with one of the three degrees offered through the joint institute: Bachelor of Business Analysis (Financial), Bachelor of Computer Graphic Design and Bachelor of Media and Creative Technologies.
Throughout their studies, the students were supported by ZUCC staff and University of Waikato staff physically in China as well as remotely from New Zealand.
Because of this interaction, University staff have been able to watch the students progress with their studies and support them to achieve their goals.
“I hope that they were able to take away not only the new-found knowledge from their two degrees, but also great friends and memories of their time with us,” says Neil.