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Warm Rural Welcome For Graduates

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

24 February 2009 - Graduates taking advantage of the Government's payment scheme to encourage more professionals into rural areas need have no fear that the move will mean the "end of life as they know it", says the National President of Rural Women New Zealand, Margaret Chapman.

"Graduates will find that living in a small country town can be a positive experience. There are bars and cafes, shops and sports clubs, transport and mail services just like anywhere else". This coupled with forecast improvements in broadband and cell phone coverage should help end the impression that rural necessarily means an isolated lifestyle, Mrs Chapman says.

RWNZ has long campaigned for strong and equitable health and education services for rural communities. "We welcome this scheme. Graduates will have the opportunity to get a good, general education and experience covering a wide spectrum of medicine rather than the narrow focus often found in large, urban health systems. The same applies to teaching and veterinary medicine," Mrs Chapman says.

Young doctors speaking at last year's Rural GP's Health Symposium all related positive experiences of working in rural hospitals and clinics. They said they benefited from the broad range of responsibilities and medical situations they had to deal with on a regular basis.

The perceived lack of highly qualified teachers at local schools can also affect the rural employment market. Questions about access to equal educational opportunities were often the first asked by potential new rural families.

Rural Women New Zealand looks forward to the injection of more health and educational professionals into rural communities. "They are sure to get a warm and friendly welcome", says Mrs Chapman.

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