International students and the NZ Police: A collaborative safety initiative

Mr Dylan Anderson1

1Victoria University Of Wellington, Wellington, New Zealand

The New Zealand education sector takes great pride and effort to market itself internationally as a prime education destination. Currently, New Zealand is home to nearly 85,000 international students on student visas, making up 1.7% of the total population. Unfortunately, international students are victims of crime at a rate higher than the general population due to a wide range of factors including: their age; exposure to, and lack of experience with alcohol and drugs; their information and help-seeking behaviour and being a transitory population. Following on from the New Zealand Police initiative “Student for Student” in Auckland, a modified version of this project was launched in Wellington in September 2016 and renamed the “International Student Ambassador” (ISA) project. The goal of the project is to empower students to take control of their personal safety and the safety of their peers by providing them with training to reduce the risk of being a victim of crime. Students from Victoria University of Wellington, Massey University, Queen Margaret College, Whitirea Polytechnic, and Weltec are involved in the project. This presentation will discuss the initiative, the positive impact on the Ambassadors and how they have been able to disseminate what they have learnt to the international student body.


Originally from the small town of Homer, Alaska, Dylan graduated from the University of Alaska Fairbanks with a BA in Philosophy and Asian Studies. He has been working with international and tertiary students in various roles in the US and New Zealand since 2007. He is currently an International Student Advisor as part of the Victoria International (VI) team at Victoria University of Wellington.


The Australian and New Zealand Student Services Association Inc. (ANZSSA) is a professional association for people with an interest in the role of support services in post secondary education.

For more information, please visit ANZSSA website by


ISANA International Education Association is the representative body for professionals in Australia and New Zealand who work in international student services, advocacy, teaching and policy development in international education.

For more information, please visit the ISANA website at

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