New Zealand-: Pathway Student Visa pilot

New Zealand launches pilot for five-year pathway visa: New Zealand has introduced a new pathway visa that will allow international students to study for three consecutive programs over a five-year period.

“The industry and Government believe that Pathway Student Visas will help retain more international students and make New Zealand more competitive with countries such as Australia, which already offer pathway programmes,” said Minister Joyce.

Pathway Student Visa pilot: -

A pathway student visa allows you to undertake up to three consecutive programmes of study on a single student visa. The Pathway Student Visa pilot will operate for 18 months from 7 December 2015. Participating education providers can offer a range of consecutive programmes of study either within their own institution or in conjunction with other selected education providers. A pathway student visa can be granted up to maximum of five years and removes the need to apply for a new student visa as you progress on an education pathway.

The New Zealand government has put a number of safeguards in place for the pilot, including the following:

  • Participating education providers must have at least a 90% student visa approval rate over the previous 12 months;
  • Providers must also enter into a formal agreement with respect to ensuring appropriate student support services.

A pathway program may be offered by a single institution or by multiple providers. A participating full list of institutions is available on the Immigration New Zealand website.

Application requirements

In order to apply for a pathway visa, students will require the following:

  • An offer of admission from a participating provider. In the case of programmes with multiple providers, Immigration New Zealand requires a joint covering letter from the providers setting out the combined study pathway along with an offer of admission from each institution.
  • Proof of funds, including tuition fees for the first programme in the pathway (or first year of study, whichever is shorter) as well as maintenance funds of NZ$15,000 (US$10,000) for the first year of study.

Students may apply online for faster processing, and further details for Pathway Student Visa applicants are available on the Immigration New Zealand website.