Study Melbourne

Greater India-Australia collaboration to enable internationalization of education

September 5, 2022

The Victorian Government Trade and Investment Office, Australia, and Study Melbourne Hub South Asia in association with EducationWorld organized a panel discussion on ‘NEP 2020: India & Australia – Enabling conversations for internationalization of education’ on September 2 at Bengaluru. The event also featured an introduction by Michelle Wade, Commissioner, South Asia Victorian Government Trade & Investment and keynote address by Prof. John Dewar, Chair of Universities Australia and vice chancellor of La Trobe University.

In her introductory comments, Michelle Wade, commissioner, South Asia Victorian Government Trade & Investment said, “India and Australia are negotiating a historic Economic Cooperation and Trade Agreement (ECTA) and are also members of the QUAD which is much more than a defence agreement. Education is one of the foundational pillars of India-Australia collaboration. And Victoria state is leading the way in boosting education partnerships. Victorian State is home to over half the total number of Indian students pursuing higher education in Australia.”

Prof. John Dewar in his keynote address highlighted that Indian and Australian higher ed institutions are already collaborating in the areas of teaching, research and faculty exchanges. “There is scope for more collaborations in these areas. Also with the National Education Policy 2020 proposing foreign universities to set up campus in India, many Australian universities may be interested in setting up offshore campuses in this country,” said Prof. Dewar.

The panel discussion moderated by Dilip Thakore, editor of EducationWorld, featured Rob Thomason, executive director of VETASSESS, Prof Lingaraja Gandhi, vice chancellor, Bengaluru City University, Sanjay Padode, president Vijaybhoomi University and IFIM Group of Institutions, Dr. Pragna Rao, pro vice chancellor, Manipal Academy of Higher Education, Bengaluru campus and Nooraine Fazal, founding managing trustee & CEO, Inventure Academy, Bengaluru.

The discussion focused on enhancing India-Australia cooperation in the areas of teacher training and vocational and skills education. Rob Thomason, executive director, VETASSESS, Australia’s largest skills assessment provider, authorised by the Australian government, said that VETASSESS is more than willing to share its expertise in enhancing curriculums and assessment practices in delivery of skills education.

Prof Gandhi added, “Karnataka is one of the pioneer states to implement NEP 2020. NEP integrates knowledge, skills, attitude, and values into the curriculum. We realize there is a skill deficit in the current system. Under NEP a student who joins a 4-year-undergraduate programme is mandated to undergo skills training and internship.” 

The event partner Study Melbourne Hub South Asia is designed for South Asian students to access support and information on the benefits of education in the state of Victoria, Australia and to reinforce Victoria’s status as ‘Australia’s best student city. The Hub brings the Melbourne study experience to students with a virtual program of events and activities centered on four main themes: employability, entrepreneurship, social connection and emotional well-being, and soft skills like creativity. It will also connect EdTech companies, investors, educators to come together (virtually or physically) to export and invest in Victoria’s EdTech capabilities.

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