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Information for learners

Updated 23 January 2022

New Zealand moved to the COVID-19 Protection Framework on Friday 3 December 2021. 

From 11.59pm on Sunday 23 January, all OP campuses will be operating under the Red setting of the Framework. 

This means you have to have a valid My Vaccine Pass to be able to physically come on to campus. If you do not have a pass, and have already begun studying, please contact your lecturer or school administrator to discuss alternative learning arrangements. If you don't know how to contact them directly, please phone 0800 762 786 and our Contact Centre can connect you with them.

At our Dunedin Campus, all doors will be locked apart from the main entrance on Forth Street. Please come to that door if you want to access The Hub or come to Customer Services. You'll need to show your My Vaccine Pass at the door. 

At our Cromwell Campus, please head to the Reception Building and show your My Vaccine Pass. 

For those studying at our Auckland International Campus, please visit their website for the most up-to-date information.

We know that this is a difficult time – COVID-19 has been with us for a long time and this is yet another change. Your health and wellbeing remains our top priority and support is available so please reach out if you need to. Find all the contacts you need in the Student Support section below.

Any questions?



On campus under the Red setting

Golden rules
  • Show your My Vaccine Pass at the entrance.
  • Scan in using the QR code (or sign in using the manual sheet).
  • Wear a mask at all times indoors - unless eating or drinking.
  • Keep your distance.
  • Wash your hands.
  • If you feel unwell, please stay away from campus and get tested.
When to use a Vaccine Pass

You’ll need to use a Vaccine Pass if you’re using any of these on-campus services:

  • hospitality venues such as Manaaki, Eden Café and Hinaki Café
  • our teaching clinics in beauty, massage therapy or hairdressing
  • our teaching gym - Tapuae.

You won't need a Vaccine Pass if you're accessing health services on campus as a patient (e.g. Student Health, Kowhai Centre).

Events on campus

Holding an event

If you are hosting an event of any size from Friday 3 December onwards, you’ll be required to action the below (whilst continuing to wear masks and practice social distancing):   

  • Get a Vaccine Pass for yourself (find out more here) 
  • Contact your attendees or customers to advise that restrictions apply (details below)  
  • At your event or venue, you must verify the attendees are vaccinated by viewing their ‘My Vaccine Pass’ 
  • Our preferred method of verification of attendees’ vaccination is to physically view their ‘My Vaccine Pass’ prior to entering your event or service  
  • If you have a mobile device (phone or tablet) that has the Vaccination Verification App downloaded, this can be used as an alternative (download App here 
  • People who do not provide evidence of their vaccination status need to be turned away, unfortunately. We appreciate that this may be difficult – please always refer back to the fact that we are following the rules that the Government have set. If you want support for how to have these conversations, please email
  • You’re not required to store any ‘My Vaccine Pass’ info or any other personal info related to the vaccination status of customers/visitors.   

Please find a poster here that you can use at your event.  

We have also drafted a message here that you can use to provide to your event attendees/customers.  

Attending an event

If you are attending an event on campus, you’ll also need to show your Vaccine Pass. Your information will not be stored in any format. 

Unfortunately, if you do not provide evidence of your vaccination status through your Vaccine Pass, you’ll be unable to attend the event. 

We recognise that these situations are difficult and would ask for your patience and understanding when interacting with other learners and/or staff.

My learning

Info about vaccination requirements for studying at OP

We’ve created a webpage that summarises the current vaccination requirements for studying at OP. 

You can access it here. 

From 1 February 2022, Otago Polytechnic requires all learners, staff, contractors and visitors to have a valid My Vaccine Pass to enter any Otago Polytechnic site.  

This decision was based on feedback given during a consultation period and has been made to support the health, safety and wellbeing of our students, staff and wider community, who are at the heart of everything we do.


Read our policy here

Otago Secondary-Tertiary College

The Government have advised that all secondary school students completing learning at a tertiary organisation (like Otago Polytechnic) don’t have to provide us with a valid My Vaccine Pass. So, this means if you're an OSTC student, you don't need to have a My Vaccine Pass to start or continue your learning.

Library services

Please see the ‘Library Hours’ section on the University Library website for all current opening hours. 

Library services
  • OP students and staff must be connected to the OP Wi-Fi or use the Covid-19 QR code when entering the library. If you do not have a device that can connect to the OP Wi-Fi, or you cannot access the NZ Covid-19 Tracer app, you must use the manual sign-in sheet available inside the entrance/reception. 
  • Face coverings are strongly encouraged but not mandatory.
  • Physical access to the Dunedin libraries is not available to Alumni and other non-University registered library users.
  • All OP staff and students can request physical library items from the University of Otago Libraries and collect them at the Robertson Library, using the Library catalogue. Supply of items may take up to 5 working days. Instructions for this are on the Robertson Library homepage under 'Place a request on items'.
  • The Library service for distance students and staff is also available and instructions for this are on the Robertson Library homepage under 'Distance learners'.
  • Face-to-face service support will be limited.
  • Full inter-loan services will resume on Monday 13 September.
  • Please return your library books. 

Any questions? 


This email account will be monitored Monday–Friday, 8:30–5pm.

Cheap broadband deal

Don’t have broadband at home because cost is a barrier?

Skinny Jump might be your answer. 

What’s Skinny Jump?

Skinny Jump is a new, low-cost prepaid broadband package available from Skinny Mobile. At Skinny, they believe that every New Zealander deserves to have the opportunities to learn and thrive in the modern digital world – a belief shared by Otago Polytechnic. So, we’ve partnered with Skinny so you can have the chance to access this package.    

Read more -

What’s the deal?

  • $5 for 30GB data
  • First 30GB free
  • Free modem delivered directly to you
  • Top up as you go – can renew the plan five times a month (maximum 150GB every month at a cost of $25)
  • No credit checks

X  Activity like online gaming and streaming vidoes can burn through data and Skinny Jump wasn’t created for lots of these kinds of activities (if you feel that you’d use more than 150GB a month, Skinny Jump might not be right for you).

Is it for me?

Skinny Jump is for those who don’t have a broadband connection at home because cost is a barrier. Skinny specifically support those most at risk of digital exclusion (as identified in the Government’s digital inclusion blueprint). 

If one or more of the following sounds like you, then you are probably eligible: 

  • Families with children
  • Job seekers
  • Seniors
  • People with disabilities
  • Refugees and migrant communities
  • Those in social housing  
  • People suffering financial hardship

Is it available everywhere?

You’ll need to live in an area that is covered by the Skinny network. Check whether Skinny Jump is available at your home address here >

How do I get this package?

As well as the above criteria, there may be other circumstances that make you eligible. 

The best way to find out whether you meet the joining criteria and can get Skinny Jump is to talk to our Otago Polytechnic Student Success team. They work as a Skinny Jump Assessment Centre and will work with you on whether you are eligible and help you to sign up for the deal. 

Contact details 

Need IT support?

Please contact your lecturer first if you are having problems with online learning.

For further technical support, our IT Service Desk is available and will be happy to help you. 

Dunedin, Central and distance students 


Phone 0800 765 948

Auckland Campus students


Phone 0800 111 212

> Find a list of computer specifications per programme and suggested laptops and devices to meet these recommendations here.  

Student Support

Support contact details and resources

One of our second year nursing students, Nika Wood, has developed this handy A-Z list of support contacts including things like the Plunket Helpline and Foodbank details. 

Download A-Z list 

We also have a Wellbeing Toolbox full of helpful resources and have developed a specific COVID-19 Learner Toolbox. And if you need support or want to talk to one of our teams at OP, please reach out to: 

Support area

Phone details

Email contact


Student Support


(Freephone from NZ) 0800 762 786

(Intl.) +64 3 477 3014

Book appointments 
online here

Student Support

(Central Otago)

(Freephone from NZ) 0800 765 9276

(Intl.) +64 3 445 9900


Book appointments 
online here  

Student Support


(Freephone from NZ) 0800 111 212

(Intl.) +64 9 309 0301



Te Punaka Ōwheo

(Māori support)


(Freephone from NZ) 0800 762 786 



Student Health


(Freephone from NZ) 0800 762 786

(NZ direct.) 03 479 6082



After hours support

Phone +64 21 735 421



Other resources 


Phone 0800 376 633


Need to talk 

Freetext 1737 anytime


Mental Health support 

The Mental Health Foundation have launched a nationwide mental health and wellbeing campaign called Getting through together Whāia E Tātou Te Pae Tawhiti specifically aimed at providing support and resources to New Zealanders while we deal with self-isolation struggles and uncertainty about the future.

They have three core messages:

  • Distance, not distant. 
  • Isolation, not isolated. 
  • Aroha from afar. 

Support and resources are available on their website and cover everything from daily wellbeing to workplace wellbeing, identity and culture, parenting and whānau. 

Online self-help tools

There are also three new online self-help tools:

  • Melon - a programme that empowers you to take control of your health and provides self-care support through resources, modules, coaching and an online community 
  • Mentemia - an app that coaches mental wellbeing which is free to all New Zealanders (co-funded by John Kirwan)
  • Staying on Track - a free course that introduces easy-to-use, practical strategies to cope with the stress and disruption of day-to-day life as a result of COVID 19

These provide different levels of support and practical strategies to cope with the stress and disruption of day-to-day life. 

For kids 

The Government have also launched a new tool for parents called Sparklers at Home to support children's wellbeing. This website offers fun wellbeing activities and ideas to support whānau to look after their wellbeing and feel good. Everything from how to talk to kids about COVID 19 to ideas about juggling work and learning.   

Need help with money or accessing technology?

Domestic students

If you're struggling a little with money during this time, don't panic. Help is available through our Student Hardship Fund! 

  • If you need support financially or help with accessing technology (or the internet), please fill in this form
  • You can fill this application form in from your mobile phone or from your desktop computer.  
  • Please ensure you complete the form and then click SUBMIT - otherwise we won't receive it. 
  • Keep an eye on your student email account - we'll send the outcome of your application to that. 

Important! You are allowed to apply for this fund more than once. 


International students 

If you're an international student and are struggling with money or technology, please contact our Student Support team.

Access to food or essential items

We all need food and essential items such as medicine through Covid-19 lockdowns, so please don't try to go without. This fact sheet has information about the many ways of getting food and other essential items to you. 

This fact sheet has information for all New Zealanders about: 

  • Food delivery 
  • If you can't get food delivered 
  • Staying safe when getting food delivered 
  • Financial help to buy food 
  • Foodbanks. 


Download fact sheet 


Childcare (Dunedin only)

Polykids will be open on a very limited basis for children of essential workers from Tuesday 7 September. 

Forth Street (opposite Otago Polytechnic Campus)
Dunedin +64 3 479 6169

Student Loans and Allowances info

You will continue to get your regular Student Allowance and Student Loan living costs payments if you’re still enrolled and studying.

Answers to questions about Student Allowance and living cost payments can be found on StudyLink’s website.

StudyLink can also help over the phone and through MyStudyLink in most cases.

If you need extra help during this time you can find information about emergency assistance here.

StudyLink details 

Phone: 0800 88 99 00 

Hours: Monday - Friday, 7.00am-6.00pm 



And of course, you can always talk to us about your programme, and any questions or concerns you have about StudyLink.

Phone: 0800 762 786 


Lost a part-time job due to Covid?

If you've lost a part-time job due to Covid-19, our Career Services team are here to help you. They're available to discuss job seeking options or how to improve your CV and cover letters in a competitive job market. 

Email if you would like support. 

Staying safe

Covid vaccination clinics (Dunedin only)

Below is a list of all Covid-19 vaccination options close to the Dunedin Campus. 

Download list 

Know the symptoms to look out for

It's really important to understand the most up-to-date list of Covid symptoms so that you know when to seek advice. 

Common symptoms include:

> a new or worsening cough 

> a fever of at least 38c

> shortness of breath 

> sore throat

> sneezing and runny nose 

> temporary loss of smell or taste. 

Less common symptoms include: 

> fever

> diarrhoea 

> headache 

> muscle pain

> nausea and vomiting 

> confusion and irritability. 


If you feel unwell

If you feel unwell or are flatting with someone who is unwell…

1. Stay home until you are/they are well. 

2. Monitor symptoms and seek further advice from health professionals if you are unsure. 

> Student Health: 0800 762 786 /

> Healthline: 0800 358 5454 

3. Continue stringent hygiene practices - regularly wash and thoroughly dry your hands; sneeze and cough into your elbow; clean or disinfect shared surfaces regularly and wear a face covering on public transport. 

Health Centres
Dunedin Campus

Student Health Centre
Harbour Terrace, M Block, Dunedin campus
Monday to Friday, 8.30am-5.00pm
Freephone 0800 762 786 (and ask for Student Health) or call direct +64 3 479 6082

The Student Health Centre is located on our Dunedin Campus. For students who have paid the Student Health Levy as part of their fees, the cost for a consultation is $15, or is free if you have a current Community Services card.

If you have not been charged the Student Health Levy (for example distance students), the service is still available but at a higher rate - please enquire for further details.

Student Health appointments

We are available for medical appointments Monday-Friday, 9.00am-4.30pm. However you will need to book in for a phone consultation first before being seen. 

This means our doors will remain locked and all appointments will be triaged over the phone.  Please be aware there may be a delay in answering your call but please be patient and we will answer as soon as we can.


  • All patients must phone for an appointment - please do not arrive at Student Health in person. 
  • All patients will be triaged over the phone and depending on your symptoms and vaccination status a decision will be made about how your appointment will take place. This might be in person or via telehealth (phone or video). 
  • All appointments will incur the usual charges (including telehealth). 
  • If you are having a telehealth consult, please make sure you are available at the agreed time for your consultation. If the doctor is unable to get hold of you at that time, you will need to ring back and arrange another time. Missed appointments will still incur a fee.

Central Otago Campus

You may be entitled to a subsidy at these medical centres (please check at the time you make the appointment). Please make sure you call ahead to these medical centres as well. 



Cromwell Family Practice
Phone +64 3 445 4666
2 McNulty Rd, Cromwell 9310

Aspiring Medical Centre 
Phone +64 3 443 0725
23 Cardrona Valley Road, 9305

Cromwell Medical Centre 
Phone +64 3 445 1119
190 Waenga Drive, Cromwell

Wanaka Medical Centre
Phone +64 3 443 0710
23 Cardrona Valley Rd, 9305

Junction Health 
Phone +64 3 445 4588
1A Traders Lane, Cromwell


Auckland International Campus

Please contact our Student Success team for advice regarding recommended medical centres in Auckland. 

Phone +64 21 0282 8711




Computer specifications for learners

Some advice for students for purchasing their device


COVID-19 Learner Toolbox

Support your online learning journey and your wellbeing.


Wellbeing Toolbox - Kia Kaha

Tools, strategies and tips to help you support your wellbeing