12 Dec 2011

Victoria University wants to see more Pasifika graduate students

7:42 pm on 12 December 2011

An assistant vice chancellor at New Zealand's Victoria University says higher education will open more doors for Pasifika people.

While the numbers of Pasifika people in New Zealand studying at Bachelor level or above have increased in the last five years, they are still under-represented in higher level study.

Completion rates for Pasifika students are also lower than for any other ethnic group.

Luamanuvao Winnie Laban says out of 22-thousand students at Victoria University, 1,000 are Pasifika, and says that's not enough.

"The growing demographic in New Zealand in relation to the Pacific is that it's a fast growing youth demographic so we've got a vested interest and commitment to grow Pasifika people and students to come to university but also to pass and pass well so they can get into higher paying jobs."

Luamanuvao Winnie Laban says the handful of people from the islands who study at Victoria on scholarships typically end up in prominent positions back in their home country.