Sara Al-Harrasi

Sara Al-Harrasi

3rd-year student, Bachelor of Health Science (Physiotherapy)

Deciding what to study was easy, says Bachelor of Health Science (Physiotherapy) student Sara Al-Harrasi.

“I’ve always been a sporty person and interested in how the body works. In my last two years of high school I completed the International Baccalaureate, and Sports Exercise and Health Science was one of the classes I chose to study. I enjoyed it so much that I decided to search for university degrees related to this area.

“I applied for AUT’s physiotherapy degree because it covers a wide range of topics, and actively involves you in your study through labs, clinical practice and outside events,” says Sara who came to AUT as an international student from Oman, supported by a scholarship from the Omani government.

Creating career-ready graduates
The focus on practical skills is one of the highlights of her studies, Sara says.

“I enjoy how practical my classes are. I can already tell how well this programme is preparing me for the future. It gives you many options to choose from when you start to think about your career instead of just sticking to physiotherapy on its own,” says Sara who is considering specialising in cardiothoracic illness or neurology for her future career.

Making friends was easy, she adds.

“Before studying at AUT, I was really worried about making friends. Orientation for new international students made that easy. I also loved that there was an orientation event for first-year physio students. It really ‘broke the ice’ between a lot of us and brought us a little closer.”

Advice for other international students
AUT is a great university for international students, Sara says.

“I love the atmosphere at AUT, and New Zealand is such a beautiful country. Don’t be afraid of flying all the way here alone! If you need help, you’ll easily find it anywhere. It’s also so diverse here, with lots of students coming from different backgrounds, so you won’t feel like you’re going through it alone.”

Make the most of your time at AUT, Sara advises other students.

“Don’t forget to make friends and explore opportunities you wouldn’t normally come across. University isn’t just about studying and working hard; it’s also about having fun, socialising and making new memories.”