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Student Profile - Mouhannad Taha

Taha520When did you come to New Zealand?
Last October (2013).

How did you hear about Otago?
I have been here twice before I come to study here, I had a chance to visit the University of Otago.

How did you feel when you first arrive? How do feel now?

I felt so happy , when I have been here first time, I met very active people and a good stuff with a very good experience ,really amazing to study here.

Where are you from?
I come from Syria, specifically, Damascus (capital city).

Where did you study previously?
I was graduated at the University of Damascus in 1995, at Law College there.
Then I joined my father law firm in the centre of Damascus as a lawyer under training until 1999 when I have got the master degree to practice law from the bar association in Damascus then I worked at our law firm till now with a very good and nice colleagues on many cases.

What brought you to Dunedin?
I came here to learn English and to enrol in University in law.
I worked in a law firm in Damascus for 18 years.
I want to improve skill in law and English and to gain higher degree in Otago.

Did you know anything about New Zealand before you arrived?
I visited NZ twice in 2011 and 2012.
I heard from friends.
My brother is here working at the Dunedin hospital for 2 years as a neuro- surgeon.
I came here with my family for a new step in my life.

How do you enjoy studying at the University of Otago Language Centre and Foundation Year?
Perfect! The centre, the facilities, the staff are all good, very helpful and organised, Unipol (gymnasium) is great in my spare time, very good teachers of high quality.
The University of Otago is very good. I have been to many European universities but in my opinion the University of Otago is the best.

What are your impressions of Dunedin?
Dunedin is not too crowded and you don’t need to spend a lot of time traveling to places.
The University is the centre of everything.
The environment is very nice, not crowded, “like a good mixture of village and city”.
It is very convenient for people to be students, it is very quiet and easy to get around.

What are your future plans?
I have to study a few papers to be able to get into postgraduate in law.
I want to keep my options open for the future of where to live.
If I get a good chance to stay and work here, I will stay here. It's a better environment here for my children than back home.