Thu 15 Nov 2018

Philippines get the WITT word

WITT’s proud record of producing qualified nurses was a key topic of conversation when senior staff visited the Philippines last week.

Carol Allen, WITT’s International Manager, and Brian Smith, WITT’s Head of Nursing, met Susan Maravilla, Dean of the College of Nursing at Manila’s University of Santo Tomas (UST).

WITT has focussed on its international market this year and has also sent teams to India, Nepal, China and, earlier this month, was part of a delegation promoting Taranaki in Thailand.

UST receives 8000 applications from prospective nurses each year and 400 are accepted into their four year Bachelor of Nursing qualification.

During the UST visit discussions centred on opportunities for nurses to train in New Zealand and the impact of an expected shortage of nurses that will affect future health workforce needs internationally.

"We discussed WITT’s 100% pass rate for its nursing graduates, compared to the national pass rate of 82.86%.  Current trends in nursing were also discussed," Carol Allen said.

WITT has 131 students enrolled in its Bachelor of Nursing programme.

Carol Allen said the Dean was well informed and spoke about the impact of nurses being recruited into employment in the UK, Germany and the Middle East.

The WITT delegation also met Immigration New Zealand’s Manila-based First Secretary Paul Pasley and Immigration Manager Lester Reyes. 

The Philippines is New Zealand’s fourth largest contributor of international students - the biggest market for students is India, followed by China and the UK.

Taranaki’s economy benefits to the tune of $50 million a year thanks to the influx of international students to schools and tertiary institutes.

Witt is a member of International Education Taranaki (IET), a cluster organisation of 10 Taranaki schools and tertiary providers formed in 2013. The group is coordinated by local government economic development agency Venture Taranaki and looks for opportunities for providers to work together and to promote Taranaki as a destination for study.  

This year IET identified Thailand as one of its key focus markets and in March, a delegation from Thailand's Office of the Private education commission visited Taranaki schools and tertiary providers.

To develop the relationship IET has recently completed a marketing tour to Bangkok, conducting seminars, visits to schools and it also promoted Taranaki and its excellent study opportunities at the Thai International Education Consultants Association (TIECA) fair on Saturday.

WITT partner members of IET involved in the Thailand visit were the Pacific International Hotel Management School and secondary schools New Plymouth Boys’ High, Spotswood College, Francis Douglas Memorial College, Sacred Heart Girls College, and Taranaki Diocesan (formerly St Mary’s).


Pictured: Carol Allen, Brian Smith and staff from UST, pictured earlier this month during the WITT visit to Manila.