15-year-old Vietnamese prodigy might have to leave New Zealand after graduation from university

15-year-old girl progidy Vicky Ngo, faces the posibility of returning to Vietnam after graduating from university in 2022, as she is not age eligibility for a residency visa in New Zealand.

Vicky Ngo Ngoc is pursuing a double degree in finance and applied mathematics and was just 13 when she entered AUT University last year.

Vicky Ngo, 15-year-old prodigy, New Zealand, Vicky Ngo, 15-year-old prodigy, New Zealand Vicky Ngo's dream is to represent NZ in the International Maths Olympiad, but she has been told there is no pathway for her to become a resident in NZ to enable her do so. Photo / Dean Purcell.

The Education Ministry said there was provision within the Education Act to enable the Ministry to consider requests for exemption for students under the age of 18 to attend university, according to NZ Herald.

"Vicky is an outstanding student and based on her current enrolment is well on track to achieve her qualification next year and graduate in the university's 2022 Winter Graduation at the age of 15," an AUT spokeswoman said.

The adoptive mother of a child maths whizz has been spending sleepless nights worrying about the prospect that she may be separated from her child who could be forced to return to Vietnam when she graduates at age 15.

But her university believes Vicky's situation warrants special consideration.

"While the university cannot be involved in individual decisions about the granting of residency, we believe Vicky is good candidate for special consideration by Immigration New Zealand," the university spokeswoman added.

Immigration lawyer Simon Laurent says Vicky's mother, who does not want to be named, has sought professional advice from him on the matter.

"There is always scope to make an exception to instructions, and there's nothing to stop a manager or a senior immigration officer from granting one. That's what we can try and do," Laurent said.

Vicky Ngo, 15-year-old prodigy, New Zealand, Vicky Ngo, 15-year-old prodigy, New Zealand Vicky Ngo Ngoc who was 13 when she entered AUT is pursuing a double degree in finance and applied mathematics. Photo / Dean Purcell

"I said to Vicky's mother I can't guarantee and outcome, but if you want to we can do it."

Laurent believes there are merits to Vicky's case because "her story is known, and her plight has been reported by the Herald".

Laurent said he was waiting on instructions on what to do next, and no application has been filed yet with INZ.

The mother said she has received an internship and job offer for Vicky from a finance company, but they were conditional to her getting a post-study work visa.

"It is so unfair that we are being put in a position where we have to spend thousands of dollars to fight for a visa that is rightfully given to all other international students just because Vicky is too smart for her age," she said.

"I worry every night about whether we will be separated after my daughter graduates and when she's forced to go back to Vietnam."

Vicky holds a student visa, while the mother, who has a Kiwi partner, is in the process of apply for a residence visa.

Vicky Ngo – The Vietnamese prodigy child

Vicky Ngo, 15-year-old prodigy, New Zealand, Vicky Ngo, 15-year-old prodigy, New Zealand Photo: NZ Herald

The mother adopted Vicky from a family in Vietnam who was too poor to pay for her to further her education.

She felt there was something very special about Vicky and felt she was a gifted child.

Vicky excelled in her studies in Vietnam and her adoptive mum felt taking her to New Zealand would give her better opportunities.

"I asked Vicky if she wanted to go to New Zealand, she said yes because there are penguins here," the mum said.

"Vicky loves penguins and on the day after we arrived, I took her to see live penguins for the first time at Kelly Tarltons."

Vicky came to New Zealand on a student visa while her mother, who has a Kiwi partner, came as her guardian.

Vicky moved to NZ in 2018 and attended St Thomas School, where she graduated her Year 7 level with distinction.

She moved on to Selwyn College after being bumped up to Year 9, but graduated high school as a top scholar for Year 12 that same year.

Graeme Holden, a teacher of mathematics and economics, said Vicky obtained excellence grades in all subjects and her answers were "well above the level needed".

"Vicky fully deserves to be fast tracked into the university study system. Despite her age, she is a mature and advanced mathematics student," Holden said.

"She has a very good analytical brain and has a forward-thinking grasp of all the maths concepts taught."

He believed Vicky would prove to be a real academic asset to the university in the future.

Selwyn College principal Sheryll Ofner said in her recommendation letter to AUT that Vicky was "single-mindedly focused on her academic subjects above anything else".

"This extraordinary academic drive coupled with an advanced intellect are helping her to achieve at levels well above her age group," she said.

Vicky was granted a ministerial exemption to enrol in university, and enrolled at AUT.

Vicky told the Weekend Herald her favourite subjects were mathematics and finance.

"I just love working with figures, and I really hope to work in the financial sector and be able to buy my first property by the time I am 16," she said.

"My immediate dream is to be on the NZ Maths Olympiad team and help them become world champions, but I need to find a way to become a resident so I can do that," she said.

Nicola Hogg, INZ's general manager said Vicky had been able to study in New Zealand on a student visa, which she was first issued in 2018.

In the past five years, 484 domestic students have received an exemption grant in Auckland.

An AUT spokeswoman said the university was proud to have Vicky studying at the institution.

"During Semester 1 she studied in our School of Engineering, Computer and Mathematical Sciences, and is now considering what to study in Semester 2," she said.

"AUT is proud to have Vicky studying with us. It's a privilege to have such an outstanding young person studying with us."

News Related

OTHER NEWS

Vietnam futsal team gets Covid-19 jab ahead of World Cup playoff

The vaccination took place Wednesday at the 175 Military Hospital in Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC). Vaccinated members of the national futsal team include players, coaches and staff. The team will face Lebanon… Read more »

Demands of holiday air travel rise despite Covid-19 pandemic

1.5 million passengers passed through the country’s airports during the recent four-day national holiday, up 30 percent year-on-year despite a surge in Covid-19 community transmissions. During the holiday (April 30-May 3), 21 airports… Read more »

V. League club, player receive warning over foul attitude

According to Vietnam Professional Football JSC (VPF), Phuong overreacted against referee Nguyen Viet Duan during the V. League game between HAGL and Becamex Binh Duong on May 2. “The incident was offensive and… Read more »

Hanoi parents struggle to find day care for kids as schools close

Preparing to send his daughter back to his hometown in central Thanh Hoa Province just hours after returning from there, Hung, 38, wished the Hanoi education department had made the decision to close… Read more »

Vietnamese woman works to involve ethnic minority farmers in clean agriculture

After several years of trial and error, Huynh Thi Quoc Tri has successfully equipped rural farmers, including ethnic minority households in central Vietnam, with the skills they need for a transition to clean farming. Tri,… Read more »

Experienced revolutionary singer still willing to reinvent himself

Singer Trọng Tấn is one among remarkable aritsts of revolutionary music. VNS Photo Hòa Nguyễn Singer Trọng Tấn is one of many remarkable revolutionary music artists. He opened the first season of Con… Read more »

Coach Park calls up 35 players for World Cup qualifiers

In the list announced Tuesday are many familiar faces who have been playing for the national team for the past three years like midfielder Nguyen Quang Hai, forward Nguyen Cong Phuong and defender… Read more »

Sixth Vietnam Day in Moscow State Institute of International Relations

The festival was hosted by Vietnamese students at the MGIMO in partnership with the institute’s ASEAN Centre which has become a useful playground for Russian students who are learning Vietnamese language and culture.… Read more »

Vietnamese Embassy in Laos requests maximum support for Vietnamese citizens

Laos Red Cross volunteers raise awareness on the symptoms of Covid-19 and the means to protect oneself from it, in a market in Vientiane, Laos, April 30, 2020. Photo by Laos Red Cross/Handout… Read more »

Overseas Vietnamese Association in Macau (China) holds ceremony for 6th anniversary

The Overseas Vietnamese Association in Macau has held a ceremony to mark several key dates, including its founding anniversary, attended by the group’s chairwoman as well as representatives from 17 provinces and cities,… Read more »

Funeral held in Japan’s prefecture for two Vietnamese victims in landslide

At the funeral service. Photo: VNA A funeral has been recenlty held in Japan’s Miyazaki prefecture for four victims of a landslide in Shiiba village, including two Vietnamese trainees, reported VNA. The landslide… Read more »

Vietnamese in Laos join hands with local authorities to battle Covid-19

Lao-Viet Bank in Luang Prabang supported four pagodas with rice, food and masks, etc worth 10 million kip (1,059U.S dollars). Photo: Vietnamplus Amidst the complex development of Covid-19 in Laos, the Vietnamese Association… Read more »

Overseas Vietnamese send aid package to flood-stricken locality in homeland

Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs To Anh Dung handed the aid package over to representative of Phu Yen Province (Photo: Thoi Dai) A ceremony attended by Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs To Anh… Read more »

Vietnamese Consulate in Vladivostok celebrates National Reunification Day

A street in Hanoi is radiantly bedecked with the national flags to celebrate the 46th anniversary of Reunification Day (30/4/1975 – 30/4/2021). Photo: Kinhtedothi The Vietnamese Consulate General in Vladivostok, Russia, marked the… Read more »

Vietnamese Embassy to Tanzania holds meeting on April 30th - May 1 anniversary

The Ambassador and staff of the Vietnam Embassy to Tanzania took a photo with the Vietnamese community. (Photo: Vietnam Embassy to Tanzania) At the meeting, the Ambassador quickly reported the 13th Party Congress… Read more »

Vietnam War Veteran Association in Russia celebrates Reunification Day

Photo: VNA According to Vietnam News Agency reporters, Vietnam War Veteran Association in Russia held a ceremony to celebrate Vietnam’s Reunification Day (April 30), the World Labour Day (May 1), and the Association’s… Read more »

Vietnamese abroad never forget love for homeland

Photo: VOV Solidarity towards the homeland No matter where they live, what they do, or how difficult their circumstances, it has always been a precious tradition of overseas Vietnamese people to look towards… Read more »

Vietnamese Buddhists in Korea encourage Covid-19 prevention forces at southwest border

Photo: Vietnamese Buddhist Association in Korea A Vietnamese Buddhist group met to offer support for Vietnam’s officers working on the front line to protect the country from the coronavirus, on April 28. At… Read more »

Vietnamese in Northern Laos join hands with local authorities in Covid-19 fight

Chairman of the Vietnamese Association in Oudomsay province Sommai Bouphaphi (L) and Party Committee Secretary cum Governor of Oudomsay Bounkhong Lachiemphong at the handing-over ceremony. Photo: VNA Speaking at the handing-over ceremony, Chairman… Read more »

Overseas Dong Nai locals significantly contribute to province's people-to-people diplomacy

Photo: Bao Dong Nai The event welcomed nearly 300 delegates, who were representatives of overseas enterprises, intellectuals, investors in Dong Nai and Ho Chi Minh City, as well as representatives from Dong Nai… Read more »

13 Vietnamese in Laos infected with Covid-19

Vientiane established field testing sites to meet a surge in suspected Covid-19 cases in the city. Vientiane, Laos’ current Covid-19 epicenter, logged 75 cases on April 28, meanwhile, three populous cities of Champasak,… Read more »

Vietnam Embassy provides maximum support for Vietnamese in Laos to fight against pandemic

A health worker takes a COVID-19 testing sample in Vientiane. (Photo: VNA) According to Vietnam Embassy to Lao and Vietnamese Association in Vientiane, currently, the number of Vietnamese in Laos infected with COVID-19… Read more »

Vietnamese in Thailand asked not to enter homeland through illegal services

People waiting for their COVID-19 testing turns in Thailand. (Photo: TG&VN) Vietnam Embassy has called the Vietnamese people in Thailand to strictly comply with the host country’s COVID-19 preventive regulations, in the situation… Read more »

Vietnamese in India fearful amidst Covid-19 storm

Relatives wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) mourn a man, who died from COVID-19, at a crematorium in New Delhi. Photo: Adnan Abidi/Reuters “The epidemic is rampant,” Hien Nguyen told Vnexpress, referring to the… Read more »

Hotline to support Vietnamese in India

Officers of the Vietnamese Embassy in New Delhi waited to receive the Covid-19 vaccines on April 7. (Photo: Vietnam Embassy to India) On April 16, 2021, answering reporters’ questions relating to the COVID-19… Read more »

Vietnamese in India struggle with Covid-19 crisis

Comforting a man infected with Covid-19 while he waits for a hospital bed in New Delhi on Sunday. Photo: Nytimes Vu Luong, who has worked in Noida (bordering New Delhi) for 3 years… Read more »

Vietnamese in Laos fear economic burden if Covid-19 prolonged

Laos on April 26 recorded 113 cases, raising the tally of infections to 436, said the Laotian Times. The latest cases were detected in 10 provinces and cities, with Champasak (southwest of Laos)… Read more »

Relief goods distributed to Vietnamese Cambodians under Covid-19 lockdown

Vietnamese General Consul Vu Ngoc Ly (R) hands over the aid to the Vietnamese-Cambodians. Photo: VNA The Preah Sihanouk province has been placed under lockdown since April 23 in a bid to stem… Read more »

Vietnamese Students' Sports Festival held in Moscow to celebrate major national holidays

At the opening ceremony. Photo: VNA Overseas Vietnamese students in Moscow, Russia on April 25 held the Sports Festival to celebrate major national holidays such as Reunification Day, Dien Bien Phu Victory, Birthday… Read more »

Vietnamese trainee indicted for abandoning dead newborns says she is innocent

Vietnamese technical intern talks about her deceased twins at a press conference in Kumamoto Prefecture’s capital city of Kumamoto on April 24, 2021. Photo: Mainichi/Takehiro Higuchi The 22-year-old defendant, who is currently out… Read more »

About 1000 Vietnamese citizens brought home from pandemic-hit India

The Vietnamese living and working in India have been brought back home in six rescue flights, said Do Thanh Hai, Counselor and Deputy Chief of Mission at the Embassy of Vietnam in India.… Read more »

Vietnamese community in India amidst raging Covid-19: nervous but try to stick

India has reported a spike in infections over the past few days. Photo: Reuters “My husband contracted Covid-19” Thuy Dung (32, from Ho Chi Minh City) is currently living in Thane (Maharashtra State,… Read more »

Cambodia newspaper highlights Vietnamese women’s good deeds to local anti-pandemic force

Nhung was captured while making cakes (Photo courtesy of Nguyen Thi Nhung) In the article named “Vietnamese woman makes cakes, milk tea to gift anti-pandemic force in Cambodia,” Ms. Nguyen Thi Nhung, a… Read more »

US Department of Defense honors Vietnamese American engineer

Tran Dai Chi poses for photo with his degree from the Southern Methodist University, Texas, U.S., in 2019. Photo courtesy of Chi. The 29-year-old works as a security engineer at Amazon in Texas.… Read more »

Vietnamese Americans vulnerable to COVID-19 misinformation

Copies of the Epoch Times in newspaper boxes on Feb. 8, 2021, in New York’s Chinatown. (Photo: AP) Young Vietnamese Americans are desperately trying to counter social media algorithms and far-right YouTube personalities… Read more »

Vietnamese in Cambodia, Laos required not to return home illegally

Lao citizens wear face masks to prevent Covid-19. Photo: VNA According to the Vietnamese Embassy in Laos, the Covid-19 epidemic in Laos has complicatedly developed, with a spike of new cases in recent… Read more »

Vietnamese woman makes cakes, milk tea to gift anti-pandemic force in Cambodia

As an owner of a grocery store, a shop selling “Bún đậu mắm tôm” (noodles with fried tofu and shrimp paste) and cakes in Toul Tom Poung area, Cambodia, Nguyen Thi Nhung’s business… Read more »

Vietnamese doctors with great dedication in Covid-19 hotspot Phnom Penh

Doctor Ton Thanh Tra, General Director of Cho Ray Phnom Penh Hospital. Photo: VTC News Doctors have to do multiple duties Tra said a number of doctors had come back to Vietnam before,… Read more »

Overseas Vietnamese around the world commemorate Hung Kings’ death anniversary

Mr. Le Dinh Vu President of the Vietnamese Association in Saint Petersburg at the ceremony (Photo: NDO) The Vietnamese community in Russia on April 21 (March 10 in lunar calendar) held the Global… Read more »

Covid-19 fight and GPS of the Vietnamese community in Poland

It’s a norm that Vietnamese people in Poland start a new day with hot news named CafeCoVy at 10:30 a.m right after the Health Ministry officially publishes the updated data on the epidemic… Read more »

Vietnam Embassy to Czech propose to soon open direct flights

Mr. Nguyen Duy Nghien, President of the Vietnamese Association in the Czech Republic (L) Speaking at the conference’s opening ceremony, Mr. Nguyen Duy Nghien, President of the Vietnamese Association in the Czech Republic… Read more »

Divorced Vietnamese women bring back children to South Korea after achieving economic self-reliance

A group of Vietnamese tourists dressed in indigenous “ao dai” gowns poses for a photo in front of the presidential office in Seoul on April 3, 2019. Photo: Yonhap Most divorced Vietnamese immigrant… Read more »

Vietnamese students in Japan donate books to help children in remote regions

VYSA CHARITY BOOK is an event held for the first time by the Vietnam Youth and Student Association in Japan (VYSA) in 2020. (Photo: Khan Am Cho Em) VYSA CHARITY BOOK is an… Read more »

Overseas Vietnamese - a friendship bridge between Vietnam and the world

Representatives of the organisations together with individuals are honoured at the event. Photo: vtc.vn Some 17 collectives and 33 individuals were honoured at a ceremony in Ho Chi Minh City on April 20… Read more »

Vietnamese in Macau show solidarity amid COVID-19 pandemic

Photo: TG&VN Macau, an autonomous region in China, is one of the best regions worldwide in controlling the pandemic, with only 49 positive cases and no death since the first outbreak. However, the… Read more »

Vietnamese in Cambodia severely affected by pandemic

Police stop vehicles to enter Phnom Penh (Photo: VN Express) The Vietnamese community in Cambodia currently includes nearly 30.000 members, mostly living in the districts of Chbar Ampov, Russey Keo, and Prek Pnov… Read more »

Vietnamese chef aspires to bring local cuisine closer to the world

“I want to introduce Vietnamese cuisine to not only Malaysians but also people in other countries in the world. If it hadn’t been for Covid-19, I would have brought Pho Vietz to the… Read more »

Vietnamese community in Malaysia holds ceremony to commemorate Hung Kings

Ms. Tran Thi Trang, Vice Chairwoman of the Vietnamese Liaison Committee in Malaysia, President of the Vietnamese Women’s Association in Malaysia presided over the ceremony, Vietnamplus reported. Ambassador Tran Viet Thai, all staff… Read more »

Online worship ceremony held in Canada to commemorate legendary ancestors of Vietnam

Ambassador Pham Cao Phong offers incense in commemoration of Hung Kings at Vietnam House in Canada. Photo: Vietnamese Embassy in Canada Every year, activities worshipping Lac Long Quan and Au Co take place… Read more »

Overseas Vietnamese director partners with int’l organization for a #StopAsianHate film

(Video: GoFundMe) “Knowing that it’s up to all of us to keep each other safe and shine a light together,” the film quotes, and it’s a harsh look at the history of anti-Asian… Read more »