Ms Sharon Smith1, Ms Brooke Young1, Ms Anna McLeod2
1Monash College, Melbourne, Australia, 2Navitas, Melbourne, Australia
Graduate employability continues to be a hot topic across the education sector. Research shows that international students choose study destinations based on work rights, expected job outcomes and global portability of degrees. However, international students face challenges in securing work during their studies and following graduation. These challenges are becoming more pronounced given the growth across the sector. This is placing increased pressure on student and careers services and impacts on the overall student experience.
The Victorian Working Group on International Student Employability (VicWISE) was formed in May 2016. It is a collaboration between the International Student Advisory Network of Australia (ISANA), National Association of Graduate Careers Advisory Services (NAGCAS), Council of International Students Australia (CISA), as well as the Victorian State Government and the City of Melbourne. Along with these groups, interested university representatives and higher education providers have joined forces to help raise awareness and take action to improve international student employability support and outcomes.
This interactive session will provide an overview of the challenges international students are experiencing and discuss the imperative for professionals to extend the capacity of the sector and community to help international students secure employment. Examples of cross-sector leadership, advocacy and communication to key stakeholders on the benefits of employing and making work-based experiences available to Victorian international students will be discussed. Participants will share resources available, employer feedback, and ways that organisations have worked successfully with international students to develop solutions. Ideas and actions that help increase access to volunteer, paid work and for-credit internships will be explored. Finally, workshop participants will be able to share best practice examples that exist in their own institutions.