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Xiuming Ma

Bachelor of Nursing Student

A photograph of UCOL nursing student Xiuming Ma

After travelling around the world as an Emirates cabin crew member, Xiuming Ma was looking to settle down. Interested in studying Nursing, she took a look around UCOL during a stop in Palmerston North, and didn’t take long to realise that this was the place for her.

Xiuming completed a degree in Media & Film Editing at Tongji University in her home country of China before moving to Dubai to work for Emirates. After living in Dubai for five years, Xiuming liked the idea of studying in a much smaller city like Palmerston North

“I like living in Palmerston North. It’s not too big and not too small, and it’s only two hours from Wellington. It’s an easy city to get around; I walk to class each day, and there are free buses for students.” 

An aerial photograph of The Square in Palmerston North City. Image courtesy of

Studying UCOL’s Bachelor of Nursing has seen Xiuming go on clinical placements in a range of health areas. She completed a placement at Summerset Retirement Village, where she developed skills for caring for and communicating with older adults. At Palmerston North Hospital she got to experience a busy ward environment. During her mental health placement with MASH Trust, Xiuming worked with Registered Nurses who provide mental health support in the community. Xiuming enjoyed her clinical placement at MASH Trust and successfully applied for casual work there as a Community Support Worker.
“It’s good to have a casual job that relates to my studies. It’s helping me to learn about different medications and how to give them to patients. It’s preparing me for my future career”.

Xuiming says the work she does in class and in the labs at UCOL prepares her well for clinical placements. 

“What we learn in class is what we do on placement. The lecturers have a lot of experience that they share with us, and you see these things when you’re on placement. You apply what you’ve learnt in class, which is a really good feeling.”

For Xuiming, one of the best things about her time at UCOL has been the great support she has received from her lecturers.    

“The lecturers are very nice and they explain things very clearly. The classes are small, so you have a lot of one on one time with the lecturers.”

Xuiming hopes to find work in primary health once she graduates from UCOL, and eventually study a Master of Nursing so she can become a Nurse Practitioner.

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