Weiwo Xie from China chose to study civil engineering in Christchurch because "it's a peaceful place to study" and he liked the practical emphasis of the Bachelor of Engineering Technology at CPIT (now Ara Institute of Canterbury).
"It provides very good industry-related programmes," he says. "The tutors have strong connections with industry and the programme includes many site visits and practical exercises. It's good to see theory applied in reality. In my home country, students are in theoretical classes the whole day but here we're encouraged and guided to explore."
Weiwo adds: "Christchurch is being rebuilt at the moment so I can see how engineering knowledge is being applied on sites nearby every day. It's exciting to know the logic behind the construction."
Weiwo has made much use of the library on campus, which he describes as a very good resource for study. "I've also talked to the Careers Centre here. They're very helpful and do make a difference."
In addition to his studies, Weiwo is working part time at Christchurch's Lyttleton Port as a geotechnical technician. "The more I'm involved in the industry, the more I feel passionate about engineering, which boosts my willingness to learn and explore."
In his spare time, Weiwo enjoys the beauty of Christchurch and its surrounding areas. "The lifestyle in Christchurch is charming because I can enjoy both the nature and urban life."
Weiwo's goal is to work in the engineering profession in New Zealand and to become a chartered professional engineer.