Brisbane befriends international students
Lord Mayor Graham Quirk is strengthening ties with about 300 of the 80,000 international students enrolled in Brisbane in the first of a series of six International Student Friendship Ceremonies, starting today.
Cr Quirk developed the ceremony concept as part of his economic development plan for Brisbane to thank international students for choosing Brisbane as their study destination and encourage them to remain lifelong friends of the city.
“These welcome ceremonies aim to encourage international students to stay associated with Brisbane in the long term and help position the city as Australia’s gateway to Asia with the future business decision makers and leaders of that region,” Cr Quirk said.
“This is our way of offering international students the chance to take advantage of future opportunities in our city and form life-long mutually-beneficial ties back to Brisbane.”
Cr Quirk said it was also about economic development by promoting the city to the world with international students acting as Brisbane ambassadors.
“Brisbane is forecast to have an extra 343,000 jobs created over the next 10 years, the majority being professional services and management positions in the resources sector,” Cr Quirk said.
“We have allocated $830,000 in this year’s budget to establish the Brisbane Ambassadors Program which harnesses the global reach of our international students to spread the word about the business and investment opportunities our city has to offer.
“Brisbane genuinely wants to stay in touch with its international students. Their advocacy as they become leaders in their chosen fields across the globe will be very important to our city’s future.
“International student enrolments in Brisbane attribute in excess of $2 billion in revenue to Brisbane each year, and I am confident that our world class education facilities and growing economy will continue to attract these numbers.”
At the ceremonies, students will receive a ‘Certificate of Friendship’ and the opportunity to network with potential employers looking for their unique language and cultural skills.
Potential employers from key industries attend and exhibit at the ceremonies, connecting students with organisations facing skills shortages.
Member institutions of international education provider network ‘Study Brisbane’ have the opportunity to invite their top students to take part in the events.
International students are also encouraged to join the ‘Study Brisbane’ Facebook social network, enabling them to ‘keep in touch’ with Brisbane both during their study and after graduation. Students considering study in Brisbane can find out more at studybrisbane.com.au