Tate's Story

Introducing Tate

Listen to Tate's Story

Tell me a little bit about yourself, Tate?

I'm originally from mainland China, but I've been living in New Zealand for a while now. Back in 2020, I graduated with a BCom in Marketing after completing the UTP Commerce programme at UCIC. I’m now working at PB Tech, as a Commercial IT Sales Consultant.

Wow, so how did you end up in Christchurch?

The decision come to New Zealand and specifically in Christchurch, was  a combination of things. Considering the costs, Australia was ruled out so it came down to Canada and New Zealand. The extreme weather in Canada didn’t appeal, so New Zealand became a no-brainer for me. Plus, the admissions and enrolment process was great. I received the offer in July 2017 and started in October. This saved time and cost compared to other options.

What about making friends in New Zealand?

UCIC organised lots of activities so that made it easy to meet new people with similar interests. The buddy programme was amazing too and I still keep in touch with some of the friends I made through it. Joining the clubs is also a great way to connect with people.

How did UCIC help in preparing you for your studies at UC and the workplace?

It played a big role in laying the right groundwork and taught me about developing good study habits which were invaluable once I hit uni and the workplace. The hands-on approach and guidance helped prepare me for the more independent style of learning that comes once you’re at UC. I even had a 99.9% attendance rate while I was there. Not bad right, right!

Did you find the tutors and mentors approachable?

Definitely. There was a lovely tutor named Tina who focused on teaching us how to write essays properly. This guidance was invaluable, especially for international students like me who weren’t familiar with academic writing conventions. UCIC provided support that I don't think would have been available if I’d jumped straight into first year uni.

Were there specific skills that you find particularly valuable in your current role?

I’d say the emphasis on effective communication and negotiation skills has enabled me to build really good relationships with clients.  I feel I can navigate complex business challenges with confidence!

What were the biggest challenges you faced during your time at UCIC?

For me it was demands of balancing part-time work, academic studies, and my own hobbies. But the Christchurch lifestyle it’s quite laid back compared to home so you’re not constantly in a lecture theatre or at the library studying. You can get out and have fun.

So, what do you do for fun?

I really enjoy travelling and playing soccer. I have been lucky enough to travel for work and have just come back from a trip to Queenstown and Dunedin. I’m also a football ref and find it so rewarding to be part of the referee team.

What about your accommodation?

I started off in a homestay for the first three months, which was a fantastic experience. My host family were lovely. And then I moved into a flat with some mates, which was a whole different and fun vibe.

And advice for a future UCIC student?

Make sure you join the WeChat group. It’s a really handy channel for students to learn about life in NZ, from shopping, renting, trading second hands, it’s all there. Overall, my journey from China to New Zealand has been so exciting and fulfilling and now I have a great job and career. I’m excited for the future and what growth lies ahead.

UCIC Programmes

Foundation Studies Certificate

University Transfer Programme: Commerce

University Transfer Programme: Science

University Transfer Programme: Engineering