International Student Testimonials and Stories

Sayaka year 8 abseil

Sayaka from Japan was at Mount Hutt College for the 2018 year.

I come from Osaka in Japan. I’ve been here for 7 months and I’m leaving New Zealand in December to go back to Japan. I’m really having fun, ‘the time of my life’, over here in New Zealand. The teachers and students and my host family who are all so helpful and so nice! I’m so lucky to have them here and a BIG thank you to everyone who is helping and supporting me. Also I could have lots of unforgettable experiences through this whole school life and homestay so far. I’m going to miss everything so much about my second country of New Zealand and I’m going to come back as soon as I can.

Sayaka, Japan.

Dressed for Diversity Day events at school.

Dressed for Diversity Day events at school.

Yume at cookie time

Yume from Japan was at Mount Hutt College for the full year 2018.

It was hard for me to learn English and get used to a very different life. I was homesick and cried for the first few weeks. However, the people were very kind, my host family, the teachers and my friends so I could enjoy my NZ life so much. My host family took me to many places and I made very awesome memories. I can’t do anything for them. I can’t thank them enough. I’m really glad I could spend time and have an amazing experience here in New Zealand. I’m going to miss everything. I want to come back here again. If you guys come over to Japan, please visit me. Thank you so much, New Zealand! Yume, Japan



Lina at the Big Tree

Lina, from Germany, was at Mount Hutt College in 2018

I’m here since five weeks and I am staying for half a year. My first impression of Mount Hutt College is good, the students are friendly, helpful and funny.

I really enjoy to go snowboarding on Mondays with Outdoor Education, on Wednesdays and on the Weekends with friends.

I was in Christchurch with the other international students and we watched our first Rugby game two weeks ago. 

And we went to Lake Tekapo and had a very funny day. We did snow tubing and relaxed in the hot pools.

Lina, Germany.


Big Tree Walk 2018

Lennart from Germany was at Mount Hutt College for Terms 1 and 2 2017.

Listen to Lennart talk about studying at Mount Hutt College here

Lennart (left) with other international students during one of the Term 1 trips.

Mayu from Japan was here for Term 1 2017.

I chose Mount Hutt College because I wanted to go to a small school such as MHC. I thought uniform is cool and Methven is a beautiful town. There are many trips. Especially I wanted to do surfing! These are my reason that I chose this school.

I stayed for three months. I arrived in Methven on 22/01/17 then I’ll leave here on 21/04/17. Everyone is very kind. They said ‘Hello’ to me almost every time. Methven is a small town so I’m happy to talk with many people. My host family is very interesting members. Mother is so kind and sometimes father makes japanese food for me. I’m enjoying being with children. We often play soccer, watch movies and so on. That’s really fun for me!


I could learn many things in my ESOL class. For example, New Zealand culture, events of New Zealand, about kiwi and of course, English, and I could go to many places for trips. We watched rugby, went to Mall, saw the Cathedral. That’s an amazing time and good experiences for me. Thank you for taking me lots of places! I played Touch Rugby, Volleyball, Soccer, Cricket and Surfing in my P.E. class and Wednesday sports. It was hard for me to play Touch Rugby and Cricket, but I had a good time with my team mates. They’re so kind, so if I have problems they taught me!

There are many people who come from different countries so I could learn about lots of things and make many friends! Most things in New Zealand are different from Japan, but I could enjoy all things, for example food, culture and people!

Nanako from Japan studied here in Term 1 2017.

Lill Family

I was glad to go to Kakanui with my homestay family. I swam at the beach for the first time and could see a dolphin. I’d like to thank them because I was able to have a good time. At school, I went to Christchurch to go shopping and watch the rugby as a trip. It was very fun. And I went surfing in P.E. class too. I’ve taken part in volleyball. It was good. Caitlin, Irene, Amelia and Davina assisted me in studying in class. Caitlin was my buddy. She has been to Japan before. They were very kind. I was glad to talk about many things and meet them. I had a good time at Mount Hutt College.

Anton, from Sweden, studied in Years 12 and 13 for three terms 2016-2017. 

Arriving in July 2016 Anton quickly settled into all his classes of Agriculture, Economics, English, Mathematics, Science, and Outdoor Education. The snowsports programme was ideal for him to enjoy ski-ing and he also played golf. For Term 1 2017 Anton was in Year 13 studying Calculus, Economics, and Physics as well as his ‘New Zealand’ subjects of Agriculture and Outdoor Education.


Anton in Outdoor Education.

Dario, from Germany, studied in Year 10 for two terms in 2016.


Dario studied English, Mathematics, Science, Social Studies and Physical Education and Health in Year 10. He also took Music as an elective and was a very active part of the Opuke Ensemble. Dario enjoyed the snowsports programme in Term 3 and was often seen playing football at lunchtime.

Shion from Japan studied for a short time during 2016 in Year 9


 My Time at Mount Hutt College as an International Student by Shion

I came here in August and stayed here for about 2 months. I think everyone at this school is kind and friendly. Methven is a safe place to live and a good place to snowboard. Mt. Hutt is very near to this town so I can practise snowboarding well. My host family is very fun and kind to me. It is the first time in my life to be in a homestay but I enjoy it every day.The International Department is kind to us because the International Room is cosy. I went to Christchurch last month, I enjoyed shopping and eating yummy food.

I have got a lot of kiwi friends and other International friends and the Japanese boys were so funny and kind to me so I had a good time in these 2 months.

The main difference between New Zealand and Japan is the food culture. I think New Zealand’s food is high in calories but very delicious.

My favourite experience is when I played basketball at school and some friends came and we played basketball together. It is a good memory for me.

Thank you for looking after me.

Franzi, from Germany, was in Year 11 for one term in 2016


Franzi and Sophie (also from Germany) wearing their school uniform.

My Time at Mount Hutt College as an International Student by Franzi

I have been here at Mount Hutt College for 3 months for Term 3. I really enjoyed my time with my host family and the time in school. The trips to Christchurch and Ashburton were interesting. I also liked the weekly cooking and the Wednesday Snowsports Programme.

I will really miss my relaxed timetable and the different people I learnt to know. But now it’s time to go back to my real life and grow up to be an adult. I have to face the reality and this exchange to New Zealand made me the person I am now. I feel older and I have become more self-confident and stronger. My English is probably better now. So thank you for the time. Thank you for caring about me. I will never forget this time.


Shopping on trip into Christchurch – Franzi and Finn (also an international student from Germany)

Jane, Angela, Kelly, Bojeong and Seonae from South Korea came to Mount Hutt College at the start of Term 3. They took part in ESOL classes and joined a Year 9 or 10 form class for many of their classes.  They also joined Year 10 Agriculture class to learn about NZ’s farming culture. They were part of a government scholarship exchange group.

Mai, Seonae and Jane

photo 2 (2)

Visit to Mayor’s office

Shogo, from Japan, was in Year 12 in 2016.


Shogo on Year 12 Geography trip to Mount Cook

My Time at Mount Hutt College as an International Student by Shogo

My New Zealand life started in January and it’s finishing after about 10 months. I thought it would be a really long time before I came to New Zealand but now I should say it was a really short time for me.

I found a really tremendous difference between my country, Japan, and New Zealand. It was really hard to do everything when I arrived here, but I can do a lot of things now and understand what people are saying.

I participated in several activities while I was here such as St. John’s, Cubs, Youth Group and working on Mt Hutt Skifield as a volunteer. Every single activity was a new experience for me and I learnt a lot from them.

If I go for a walk in Methven, I always see somebody I know. I was really happy to be here. I like this town and all of my friends.


Shogo with Year 12 Physical Education class – High Ropes exercise at Adrenaline Forest

Ami, from Japan, was at Mount Hutt College for Term 1 2016.


Ami in sports uniform

My Time at Mount Hutt College as an International Student by Ami

I joined Stage Challenge which was a good experience for me. I learned to dance.

My homestay and family are really lovely. I am blessed with my host family. The trips and outings are really fun, I experienced good things in New Zealand.

I made international and kiwi friends. I enjoyed surfing with the PE class.


With host family

Tomomi, from Japan, was in Year 11 at Mount Hutt College in 2015.


Tomomi was in Gold House

My Time at Mount Hutt College as an International Student by Tomomi

I have been staying in New Zealand for about 10 months. My host family are very kind. I went on two trips with my host family in the holidays. My host sisters and brothers play with me and talk to me. My host father likes rugby so we talk about it. My host mother always talks to me. If I don’t understand she speaks slowly and writes the words I don’t know on paper. I think this host family is the best.

I went surfing and mountainbiking on PE trips. They were a very good experience for me. Students are very friendly and kind. The nature of New Zealand is much clearer than Japan. ESOL is very good. The teacher speaks slowly for us. She explains the things I don’t know.

I like PE the best. I can talk with the students of the PE class because I play many sports with them. We cooperate to win the game. I want all International students to take PE class.  The food in the school café is a good price.

I went to Mt. Cook and Tekapo on an International trip for 1 night and 2 days. It was very good.

Many students of other countries come to Mount Hutt College, for example Chinese, Thai people, Japanese, Filipino and German. It is a good experience for me and them. Kiwi students don’t discriminate against International students. They are very friendly and when I don’t understand they give me a hand. The teachers are very good too. They praise us very much. When I don’t understand something I can ask after the class.

Mount Hutt College is a very comfortable place.


Tomomi with friends at the senior School Ball


Ice skating at Lake Tekapo


 Koki, from Japan, was in Year 12 in 2015.
He studied Food, Nutrition and Health, Geography, Maths, ESOL, and Music.
He volunteered as a cub leader and a school library assistant. He organised an international student trip to Mt. Cook. He entered the Senior Speech Competition and received Highly Commended.


Student Story Zoe 2014













Koki helping out with the lawn mowing at home.


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