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Working while you study

Getting a part-time job while you study can help you pay your
living expenses, meet new people and gain valuable
experience of the New Zealand workplace.

Why choose New Zealand

Learn more about working while you study

Working while studying can be a good way to gain New Zealand work experience and help support you while you’re studying abroad.

Gaining experience of a New Zealand workplace also helps you develop skills such as communication, teamwork, timekeeping, interpersonal skills and workplace-relevant English language skills.

Balance your work hours with your study obligations, so your academic performance isn’t compromised, and remember that some scholarships set limits on the number of hours you 
can work.

as you study benefits of part time work

New Zealand has a wide range of industries that offer part-time and casual work.

Some educational institutions also offer students part-time work teaching, tutoring or carrying out administration duties.

Paid internships are a way of gaining industry experience and networking with people in your field of study. Carrying out voluntary work in New Zealand can also be a great addition to your CV, giving you useful experience of the New Zealand workplace.

as you study work opportunities

Student Job Search is an organisation set up to help students find work and gain job experience.

Your educational institution may also offer students assistance to learn job-related skills such as writing CVs and preparing for an interview. Seasonal work can be a good way to earn extra money over the holidays and gain new skills.

If you have worked in your home country, it may be helpful to ask your employer for a written reference that you could show to a potential New Zealand employer.

as you study finding work

Shriniva Khedekar, a University of Auckland student from India, works part-time while studying for a Master of Engineering Studies in Construction Management – and still finds time to play cricket.

as you study employment rights 1

International students have the same legal minimum rights and entitlements as anyone else working in New Zealand.

These include your right to be paid at least the minimum wage, paid annual and public holidays, and rest breaks.

employment rights 2

If you have a Student Visa you may be able to work:

  • Up to 20 hours a week during term time
  • Full-time during scheduled holidays

If you are a Masters by research or PhD student, you may work full-time.

To check whether you’re able to work while studying, visit Immigration New Zealand's website.

Hear from international students working part-time

as you study voluntary jobs jamie testimony
Balancing study and work

Jamie Ybañez balances studying for a Graduate Diploma in Addiction, Alcohol and Drug Studies at WelTec in Wellington with part-time work at a retirement village.

Jamie, who was a nurse back home in the Philippines, does three shifts a week at the village as a healthcare assistant.

She says the work has helped her to become more patient, and given her a better understanding of New Zealand workplaces.

Even though I speak English, the old people I work with have shown me lots of new words that I need to learn to work here. I’ve also learned more about their culture.

Jamie plans to work fulltime over the holidays after her one-year course ends, and will then apply for a 12-month post-study work visa.

Jamie Ybañez

from the Philippines, a Graduate Diploma in Addiction, Alcohol and Drug Studies student at WelTec

as you study voluntary jobs tk testimony
Voluntary work leads to part-time job

Voluntary jobs led Thai student TK Sirawit Pattanacharoenkit to find part-time work while studying abroad in New Zealand.

TK volunteered at a cafe at the Auckland Institute of Studies (AIS), where he is studying for a Bachelor of Hospitality Management. He also helped out at two quiz nights at a community centre.

Having the voluntary roles on his CV helped him land casual work at the ASB Showgrounds, where he works as a barista and in food preparation.

“They are really nice to me at the showgrounds, and my co-workers are very helpful” says TK

“It’s important to balance work and study, but I enjoy working and it is good to get work experience. I want to do a Masters’ at the University of Auckland after this, so I will be looking for part-time work in management for my next part-time job.”

TK Sirawit Pattanacharoenkit

from Thailand, a Bachelor of Hospitality Management student at Auckland Institute of Studies

as you study voluntary jobs maria testimony
Gaining experience of the Kiwi workplace

Working part-time caring for older people in a rest home has given Maria Cyrene Sto. Domingo a head start in the New Zealand work environment.

Maria, from the Philippines, is studying for a Diploma of Health Services Management at EDENZ College, a private training establishment in Auckland.

She took two eight-hour shifts a week as a healthcare assistant in a rest home a short bus ride away from her house. Maria enjoyed the interaction with residents, especially with one elderly woman who reminded her of her grandmother.

“Whenever she saw me, she’d smile and hold my face in her hands,” says Maria.

After eight months at the rest home, Maria started a new part-time job as a promotions assistant at Unitec Institute of Technology.

“Working part-time has helped me develop my time management and communication skills and to meet people,” says Maria.

Maria Cyrene Sto. Domingo

from the Philippines, a Diploma of Health Services Management student at EDENZ College, Auckland

Your work rights while studying

Student visas

If you have a Student Visa you may be able to work:

Up to 20 hours a week during term time

Full-time during scheduled holidays

Masters and PhD

If you are a Masters by research or PhD student, you may work:

Full-time during term time.

Full-time during scheduled holidays

Hospitality, retail, agriculture and tourism are among the main sectors offering part-time work in New Zealand. These websites may help you with your job search.

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