Ms Diana Crvenkovic1
1Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources, Melbourne, Australia
This presentation will provide detail on the wide variety of projects funded by Study Melbourne over the last two years to support and enhance the experience of international students living in the state. Study Melbourne invests in projects delivered by student associations, international education associations, not for profits, companies, local governments and various partnerships. These investments, primarily through the $4 million International Student Welfare Grants program, have supported international students living in the state to excel beyond the classroom in many areas.
These projects closely align with the conference theme of ‘Connectivity’ and ‘Enablers’ as they support successful connections between students and the wider community, ensure that students social, cultural and spiritual needs are being met and ensure conditions are in place for students to succeed in their own education journey. The projects have:
- built links between students and the wider community, for example through the Bendigo and Geelong based community engagement projects
- created cultural understanding and cross cultural transition for example by supporting students to connect with their domestic counterparts through common areas of interest i.e. sports, arts and fashion
- offered support to students navigating relationships and their sexuality, by supporting a number of different sexual health projects and mental health initiatives
- created volunteering opportunities as a core requirement of many of the funded projects, and
- worked successfully with student unions and student clubs/societies as key partners to the successful delivery of all projects
Another key area of focus has been supporting students facing workplace exploitation, with a concerted campaign implemented over the past two years including the establishment of the International Student Work Rights Legal Service which providing free and confidential legal advice including case work to all international students in Victoria.