Australian education is on a roll in Gujarat, with two Australian Universities set to open campuses in Gandhinagar GIFT City. Deakin University has already started construction and Wollongong University is on its way. Addressing a news conference in Ahmedabad on Thursday, Dr Monica Kennedy of the Australian Trade & Investment Commission (Austrade) said her country was the first to come up with a proposal after legislation was enacted last year to allow for the setting up of university campuses in GIFT City. “This is a great time for Australia-India relations, especially in the education sector. We have been particularly successful in Ahmedabad, with many students opting for Australia over traditional destinations like the UK and USA,” she said.
Austrade is organising a Study in Australia event at the Taj Skyline in Ahmedabad on 7 September, as part of a six-city roadshow. The roadshow is meant to serve as a platform for students and parents to engage directly with delegates from Australian Universities and government, especially those from the department of Home Affairs and Education. “This is an excellent platform for students to understand emerging trends in the education sector in Australia and make a choice of destination,” said Dr Kennedy.
Australia has a skill deficit in several areas, including healthcare and information technology, and Austrade has prepared a list of courses that students may want to take if they wish to stay on and work in Australia. There are also some new scholarships available for students from India, information on which will be available at the roadshow.
Over one lakh Indian students are currently enrolled in Australian universities, mostly for higher degrees in engineering and management. Dr Kennedy says more students are now opting for humanities, which is a welcome trend. “We also see more Indian women enrolling in our universities, which means parents consider Australia to be a safe destination for their children,” she said.