News, Events and Culture

Palmerston North youth to represent Palmerston North in China

Friday June 22 2018

Former St Peter’s College student Krista McJarrow-Keller is soon to represent Palmerston North as a Youth Ambassador to Kunshan (China) for the duration of her studies at Duke Kunshan University.

Photo shows Mayor Grant Smith and Krista McJarrow-Keller and her family.

Klem McJarrow-Keller; Paul McJarrow, Mayor Grant Smith, Krista McJarrow-Keller and Sue Keller.

In late 2017, Kunshan offered Palmerston North a generous four-year undergraduate tuition scholarship to Duke Kunshan University, based on the city’s Friendship City relationship. This scholarship was awarded to Krista and has a value of of over $300,000NZD in tuition fees over the four years.

“Duke Kunshan University has a high standard for enrolment (both in terms of academic and leadership ability) so Krista’s acceptance of the scholarship is a significant achievement and reflects her excellent academic record and community,” says PNCC Mayor Grant Smith.

Duke Kunshan University (DKU) is a Sino-American partnership of Duke University and Wuhan University, founded in 2013, to create a liberal arts and research university.

Given her time in Kunshan over the next four years, Council recently voted to make Krista an official Youth Ambassador to their friendship city.

“With this role, Krista can build relationships with the Kunshan Foreign Affairs Office, attend important events, promote Palmerston North, and pursue leadership opportunities. It will also give her a channel to feedback ideas or initiatives to the PNCC International Relations Office for greater youth connectivity between our cities.”

To help Krista prepare for her role as Youth Ambassador, PNCC is sponsoring Krista’s participation in the upcoming NZ China Youth Leadership Summit, held in Qingdao in July - run by the Institute for Global Engagement.

The Sister City focused initiative provides a unique cross-cultural immersion experience for the next generation of global citizens, leaders and entrepreneurs of China and New Zealand.