Queenstown teen Zara McLeod will jet off to Mexico next year after claiming a prestigious scholarship.
The 19-year-old former Wakatipu High School pupil, who is in her second year of study at the University of Auckland, has been awarded a Prime Minister’s Scholarship for Asia and Latin America.
She’ll head to Guadalajara for a semester next year to study, as part of her Bachelor of Global Studies.
She is also studying for a Bachelor of Law.
“It’s pretty exciting, I’m very grateful,” she says.
She picked Mexico for a number of reasons, including wanting to learn Spanish.
“It just seems like an awesome country, really vibrant.”
She’s also keen to pursue a career in foreign affairs or diplomacy once she’s finished studying.
McLeod believes Mexico has the potential to become a “really big trading partner”.
The scholarship winners were recently announced by the Minister of Education, Chris Hipkins.
Hipkins said: “We are seeing a growing demand from individuals and education providers as well as private businesses and other organisations for the rich experiences these scholarships offer.
“International internships, in particular, continue to increase in popularity as students and faculty recognise their contribution to the development of inter-cultural skills that help people live, work and learn globally.”