• New Zealand
    • Wellington
    • Palmerston North
    • Auckland
Fall, Spring
Subject Areas
Accounting Agriculture Art History Biology Business Design Engineering International Business Liberal Arts Sociology
Need-based funding, Merit-based funding, General grants/scholarships
Health & Safety

Program Details

Program Type
Degree Level
Apartment Host Family
Apr 08, 2024
Apr 16, 2024
16 travelers are looking at this program

About Program

This program offers the opportunity to enroll in a wide range of Massey University courses across the five colleges: Business, Health, Sciences, Humanities and Social Sciences and Creative Arts, including an extensive program in Maori Visual and Performing Arts. Massey University operates three campuses located in different cities, Palmerston North, Auckland, and Wellington, within the North Island of New Zealand. Each campus offers a unique environment in which to study and immerse yourself in the local culture. Check out the USAC website for more details today!

Video and Photos

Diversity & Inclusion

LGBTQIA+ Support

There are LGBTQIA+ friends, colleagues, and allies throughout the world. However, cultural understanding of gender identity and sexuality does vary from country to country. USAC has compiled a lot of resources to help you through that learning process.

Accessibility Support

USAC is dedicated to working closely with students with disabilities to ensure the best study abroad experience possible. You may request reasonable accommodations after your initial application is complete. We routinely receive requests for scheduling, material, and environmental accommodations for the classroom setting, which may include assistive technology, scribes and readers, printed material, and interpretation.



Environmentally-conscious students choose USAC because many of our programs are held in some of the most sustainable countries in the world. There are options to take coursework in sustainability and the environment, as well as field trips and studies where students can leave a lasting impact on their host country.

Program Highlights

  • Choose to study at one of Massey University’s three unique campuses: Auckland, Manawatū (Palmerston North), or Wellington.
  • Study at one of New Zealand’s leading educational institutions, known for its academic leadership, research excellence, and innovative teaching.
  • Experience the many natural wonders and unique Kiwi cultural experiences that New Zealand has to offer.

Program Reviews

5.00 Rating
based on 8 reviews
  • 5 rating 100%
  • 4 rating 0%
  • 3 rating 0%
  • 2 rating 0%
  • 1 rating 0%
  • Academics 4
  • Support 4.65
  • Fun 4.5
  • Housing 4.65
  • Safety 5
Showing 1 - 8 of 8 reviews
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Yes, I recommend this program

Massey University-Wellington

Studying at Massey University-Wellington was excellent! The fine arts program is wonderful, with excellent facilities and staff. I learned a lot in a program structured differently than my home university. These months at Massey helped me to become a better artist. Wellington is a beautiful city with great accessibility, close to the beach, overwhelmingly safe, and top-tier public transport. There is always something to do in Wellington, the city is full of life. The people of Wellington are nice and inviting. It was easy to make friends fast!

What was the most surprising thing you saw or did?
The wildlife in New Zealand is amazing. There are so many birds that pop up out of nowhere! Fantails, Tui, and Kaka live all over the city. I had a friend that had Kaka nesting in their ceiling! One day, a chick fell through the ceiling!
  • Community
  • Affordable
  • Beaches and weather
  • Windy
  • Lots of walking and hills
15 people found this review helpful.
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No, I don't recommend this program

Amazing time in New Zealand!

My time in New Zealand was amazing! The process of applying for the university and actually going there were relatively easy though there was a lot of waiting. Going into this, I was unsure if I would be comfortable in a different country, and I was also nervous if I would be able to make friends. But, the community at Massey University was great, and I was able to meet some really incredible friends and I was able to travel around New Zealand and see the beautiful sights. The university was also incredibly safe, as was the country as a whole as I was able to walk around downtown feeling incredibly safe as well as taking public transportation to many places.
This was the best decision I have made, as very grateful that I had the opportunity to travel and study abroad in New Zealand.

  • Beautiful scenery
  • Good education
  • Nice housing
  • The Albany campus is particularly small and farther away from places.
  • Loneliness from missing family
41 people found this review helpful.
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Yes, I recommend this program

Experience of a Lifetime

I had the most amazing experience over in New Zealand. I had made some lifelong friends that I still keep in touch with both from America and from New Zealand. I know I'll always have a place to stay whenever I go back too. Studying abroad was a life changing experience. I have seen places that are absolutely unreal, I saw dolphins at the bay, I got to see 10,000+ waterfalls in Fiordland National Park, I got to drive on the opposite side of the road blasting my favorite music with my friends, I camped at the top of a mountain next to Mt. Cook in a hut and saw the Milky Way with as many stars possible, I camped on a beach with the mountains in the background, I got to camp and snuggle in the freezing cold in all my friends in a small tent we bought for $10. We ate as many PB&Js possible, I got to hang out all night with friends and go to Maca's when we were in town and check out so many local bands. I had the actual time of my life.

What was the most nerve-racking moment and how did you overcome it?
My most nerve-racking moment was when I went sky-diving. I'm terrified of heights, but once I was up in the plane it was AMAZING. The view was amazing and I just took it all in. I also didn't know anyone going into this program, and I came out knowing so many new people.
108 people found this review helpful.
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Yes, I recommend this program

Studying Abroad in New Zealand

I had always wanted to go to New Zealand since I was little. Finally having the chance to go there through studying abroad made me super excited, but of course I had my fears because it would be my first time traveling alone without my family or anyone I knew. Stepping off the plane into New Zealand fall-like winter after leaving America's summer was an awakening in itself. I had arrived and was excited to see in person why New Zealand interested me. The first thing that drew me in to this country was its greenery and views. The mountains, skies, grass, and vibrant environment became a quick comfort to admire in this beautiful country. Second, I really appreciated the classes I took that not only allowed me to connect with native people, but also learn more about the country. I recommend taking a Maori course because you get to learn the language and history, which opens your eyes to how New Zealand is shaped the way it is and remains so refined. Compared to America I definitely see kiwis (what New Zealanders are called) as more trusting, supportive, and engaging. Many tend to leave their doors unlocked, I've connected and gotten to know people in a Domino's, grocery store, and hostel even when I knew I'd probably never see them again. Thirdly, New Zealand allowed me to do scary and beautiful adventures. It is a small country, but holds a lot of thrill seeking attractions and many places to hike (kiwis call hiking tramping). Sadly, I did not go to nearly as many places as I wish I did, but enjoyed the places I did venture to. For my study abroad I was in Palmerston North and I traveled to Wellington, Rotorua, and parts of the South Island, ending in Queenstown during university breaks or a weekend. I hiked two glaciers, went kayaking with seals, saw a seal colony, saw a glow worm cave, saw a waterfall, made it to the pancake rocks, saw a powhiri (New Zealand welcome ceremony), and camped out near a beach to awake to a mesmerizing sunrise. I love how New Zealand is very in tune with the nature that resides around them. The fourth thing I would have to say about New Zealand is that its peacefulness is what captured me. It is a country that always makes you want to stop and admire and relax. I now look for that beauty and calmness everywhere I go, even if it's just within my home state. I think New Zealand helped me see myself as more independent. Saving money to travel, eat, go out with friends, do laundry, and buy gifts and souvenirs was hard for me, but post-program I have definitely gotten better at budgeting. My experience pushed me out of my comfort zone and made me appreciate who I am, what I am capable of, and this gorgeous country. I want to save money to go back to New Zealand and bring my family and friends. I think everyone should at least see New Zealand once because its atmosphere leaves you feeling reawakened.

What would you improve about this program?
Maybe have one event that allows us to meet the other USAC people in the program to help our adjustment and nerves. Like a small orientation.
111 people found this review helpful.
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Yes, I recommend this program

Massey was more than I could ask for

When I arrived in New Zealand, I was all on my own, not knowing a single person. I left the airport balling my eyes out after my program ended because of the lifelong friends I was leaving behind. The staff at the on campus housing was amazing. They put events together that everyone was excited about and it gave me a chance to make these great friends. The academics were totally different from what I was used to in Colorado. There were very few homework assignments but most of the classes were essay based. Being a finance major, I was not used to all that writing and it actually made me an overall better college writer. I wouldn’t trade the memories made while I was in Auckland for anything. I grew into someone that I’m proud to say is my best self.

What would you improve about this program?
The only complaint I had while I was there was that the meal plans that we were forced to buy with our housing was some of the worst food I’d ever had. I’ve been in contact with a couple people who decided to stay in the halls there for a second year and they informed me that they have improved ten fold since my stay there.
117 people found this review helpful.
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Yes, I recommend this program

Truly the Greatest Experience at Massey Wellington

Signing up for a semester abroad at Massey Wellington was a bit of a shot in the dark since I wasn't really guaranteed to get any of the classes I was interested in. Since I was entering CoCA (Massey's art school) it's very competitive and difficult to get the classes you are interested in.

When I first got my schedule I didn't receive any of the classes ("papers") I wanted, but after talking with a number of different professors I was able to get into everything I wanted. The classes were by far my favorite classes I've taken throughout my college career. Being surrounded by so many creative minds and industry professionals was an incredible experience.

When I decided to study abroad at Massey though, my plan was to travel and academics were just part of that process. It turned out that academics became more than just a side job which I'm very grateful for. The traveling was also spectacular though. I've never seen so many incredible landscapes and gone on so many memorable hikes in such a short period of time.

If you're looking for good academics and scenery that you'll remember for the rest of your life, Massey Wellington is the place for you!

What would you improve about this program?
The only issue with this program is that is very independent academically speaking. You need to be motivated to get the classes you want, and once you get them they're very hands on and independent so be prepared to work hard on your own. This isn't so much a criticism as it is a warning.

111 people found this review helpful.
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Yes, I recommend this program

I Left my Heart in Palmy

I chose the semester-ling study abroad program at Massey University in Palmerston North New Zealand and it was one of the best decisions I've ever made. I made so many new friends and shared experiences that I wouldn't trade for the world.

Kiwis are some of the kindest people you will ever meet - the cashiers at Pak & Save actually took the time to ask me how I was doing and were interested in hearing what I had to say. In fact, I asked where something was one day and the store clerk stopped what he was doing and physically showed me where to find what I was looking for instead of riddling off a random isle number. I really appreciated that.

As far as academics went, Massey offered courses that were challenging and enlightening. The overall class structure was completely different to what I was used to with my home university: there were only a couple assignments or "homeworks" to pass in and then there were exams and those were your only grades. A lot of learning outside the classroom is required as well - professors don't hold your hand nearly as much as they do in the States. I learned a lot from my courses at Massey and was able to get an interesting take on various aspects of American politics and education by hearing the Kiwi side of it.

Culture shock was not really a problem in New Zealand since everyone spoke English. I think my greatest challenge was getting around, and even that wasn't that difficult. The bus schedules are posted throughout campus and are easy to look up online.

The scenery, the people, the culture... everything about New Zealand was amazing and beautiful. I loved it so much that I've been back again in a year and I am planning on living there permanently in the future.

What would you improve about this program?
I would have liked to hear from USAC a bit more throughout my program. For example, I notified my program advisor that I had made it to Massey after a cancelled flight and an overnight in Auckland and they seemed almost surprised to hear from me. I would have hoped that the program advisor would have tried to reach out to make sure that I made it alright since I was flying literally to the other side of the world but that was not the case. Not only that, there were several earthquakes and eruptions while I was there and I heard nothing from my program advisor to make sure that I was alright.

Additionally, I would have liked to fly with other people from my program. My parents were extremely nervous about sending me to the other side of the globe on my own. Other programs through USAC offer group flights, group outings, even group dinners and I feel that the New Zealand program gets the short end of the stick. Program providers like GlobalLinks, IFSA Butler, etc. offer those same types of excursions which USAC New Zealand program did not.

The group dinner would have been very helpful to meet other USAC participants in the program. It was very difficult to seek each other out on campus with no internet connection. The International Student Support Staff at Massey hosted pizza nights for us international students to have us mingle and meet each other, and also to give us important information about the university, however it would have been nice to have USAC plan something for us.

USAC did not notify us of additional accommodation fees that we would encounter at the end of our program. The website says that we were to book our flight out with a departure date no later than the 4th July, however orientation did not start until just about a week later. Instead of sitting around campus all day with nothing to do, USAC should have planned a group outing of sorts to keep us occupied - some type of pre-orientation orientation would have been very helpful. A lot of people in the USAC program at Massey Palmy had never left the country before so culture shock and getting around was difficult for them. Living on campus for an additional week was not free, and that additional fee was not outlined in the USAC program information.

I have recommended this program to other students both from my home university and from other universities in the States, however I recommend this program with reservations.
116 people found this review helpful.
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Yes, I recommend this program

Massey Wellington a great choice

Even though this program description only addresses the study abroad experience in Palmerston North (where the largest Massey campus is), USAC students can also choose to study in either Auckland (New Zealand's largest city) or Wellington (New Zealand's capital), where Massey has smaller branches.

I chose to study in Wellington. In fact, I chose the USAC program specifically because it included the option to study in Wellington. I had visited Wellington before, and wanted to spend my semester abroad in this great city.

My experience at Massey Wellington was great. The International Student Support staff were all fantastic. I had an issue with my housing the very first day (I lived in a Massey-affiliated apartment with 4 New Zealand students, and was originally placed in the wrong flat), but the support staff was very helpful and got me into a better room situation within 24 hours. The staff also planned get-togethers and outings for all the international students, and were always around and willing to chat. Our main support contact even helped us out with travel planning!

Massey Wellington is largely a design school, but I took courses ("papers") there in journalism, pop culture, and travel writing. The courses were interesting, and the in-class time and workload was, frankly, minimal. I went to class 7 hours a week, and had 4-day weekends. Assignments were tough when they came around, but nothing I wasn't prepared to handle.

I enjoyed going to school in New Zealand. But I enjoyed living in Wellington even more. My flatmates were fun (though housing was co-ed, which I was not expecting), and the city of Wellington is fantastic. It's not a small city like Palmerston North, nor a big city like Auckland. Instead, it's a very walkable, livable city. There's tons of culture here (food, theater, nightlife), and always something going on. Plus, with it's location right in the middle of the country, it makes a great jumping-off point for other travel around New Zealand.

And, if you're going to study abroad in New Zealand, most definitely plan to do some traveling. The country is small and easy to get around, and has so much beauty that it will blow your mind. And the locals? Some of the friendliest people you will ever meet.

121 people found this review helpful.
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