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Pacific Islands Research & Student Support Unit

Talofa lava, Kia Orana, Fakalofa lahi atu, Mauri, Ni sa bula vinaka, Taloha ni, Malo e lelei and Warm Pacific greetings!

PIRSSU staff group image

The Pacific Islands Research & Student Support Unit (PIRSSU) currently looks after approximately 500 Pacific students from New Zealand and the Pacific region studying in the Division of Health Sciences. We offer excellent training in health professional and allied health programmes, nurture successful research careers, and offer quality pastoral care in an inclusive cultural environment. We look forward to welcoming you to our Pacific community in Health Sciences.

If you are thinking about coming to Otago, check out our programmes and events, add us on facebook and contact us today about further information about the support available to help you succeed in your University career! For more information on life at Otago check out Otago Life and if you are a first year student, then have a look at My Otago First Year. Keep scrolling to see some 60 second videos of why Pacific Students love Otago!

We engage with Pacific communities, schools, career advisors, government, and non-government organisations to achieve these aims. Our activities are guided by Va'a o Tautai and the Pacific Strategic Framework, which has six areas of focus:


Demonstrating and valuing leadership on Pacific matters


Enhancing capability


Encouraging Pacific research excellence


Strengthening community engagement


Developing Pacific curriculum


Contributing to the Pacific region and international progress

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