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Student Stories

Ellie Parker

Ellie is an Honours student at the University of Otago

“I started studying at Otago in 2010 and I have had the most amazing life experiences ever since. New Zealand is a fantastic place to live and study.

“I did a Bachelor of Applied Sciences, majoring in Design for Technology. The major and minor system used here is great – if you have an interest in something not related to your major you can take it as an interest paper or a minor. I minored in film and media studies, but also took papers in computer science, maths and theatre studies.

“Otago offers a student lifestyle that is (in my biased opinion!) unrivalled. People come to Dunedin to join in and have fun. I have friends from all over the world now.

“I completed my degree last year, but wanted to then do honours as I felt it would give me better job prospects. Otago has a three plus one system, so you do bachelors and then do an honours year as a postgraduate. I have a year to complete a dissertation, though I still do papers as well. After my course I’ll have the opportunity to go into a number of very different careers. I still haven’t decided what to do yet though, because I’ve found I really like research and am currently trying to decide between postgraduate study and starting a career.

“An applied sciences degree allows you to go on to just about anything, it’s incredibly useful. I could go into business, strategic consultancy, innovation research and development or media; work for technology firms, design practices, advertising, marketing, publishing, the list just goes on.

“I came here expecting it to be pretty cool, but it’s been amazing. There are times when it gets hard not having family and old friends around, but I have never regretted my decision as the life I have here is just beyond anything I could have hoped for. The friends I have made are people I will know for a very long time, and the places I have travelled to are unforgettable. It is worth going half the way round the world for, every time!”