The pent-up demand for overseas education in the post-pandemic era still appears to be working in Australia’s favour. The number of Indian students heading to Australia for higher education this year has surpassed pre-coronavirus levels.
Australian Department of Trade and Investment Senior Trade and Investment Commissioner Monica Kennedy said: “During the period July 2022 to February 2023, the Australian Department of Home Affairs issued 382,000 student visas. Compared with the same period in 2019 to 2020, An increase of 41.3 per cent.” Australian Government Investment Commission (Austrade).
She was speaking at a news conference on Wednesday announcing that the “Study in Australia Roadshow” will be held in the city on September 12.
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She said the number of outstanding Indian students in Australia had risen to 95,791 between January and April 2023, compared with 75,109 in the same period in 2022. “Australia welcomed 47,759 Indian students between January and May 2023 alone.”
Kennedy said the surge in student inflows was due to growing desire from Indian students seeking international degrees, Australia’s student- and migrant-friendly policies, world-class universities and post-graduation job opportunities.
She added that the Australian government released a curriculum list in July, focusing on science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) and health, areas where Australia has a skills gap. Students who choose these programs can stay for an additional two years to work after graduation, she said. Under the program, undergraduates can take up to 4 years (including two years after graduation), masters up to 5 years, and doctoral up to 6 years.
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Kennedy said the government had also taken a number of other steps, including a review of Australia’s immigration laws and changes to the post-study work policy.
Kennedy said Australia and India signed a mutual recognition mechanism in March this year and approved Australian universities to set up foreign campuses in India, which is a testament to the strong relationship between India and Australia.
Earlier this year, the Indian government allowed Australia’s Deakin University and University of Wollongong to set up campuses in Gift City, Gujarat. “This is really a big deal. It’s an awareness that Australia and India respect each other’s systems and want to improve student mobility across borders,” she added.