| Izah Azahari |
THE Australian High Commission yesterday held a pre-departure briefing at the residence of the Australian High Commissioner to Brunei Darussalam, Todd Mercer, in Kota Batu. It was held for students bound for Australia to further their studies in the coming months.
The High Commissioner was accompanied by Australian High Commission and Austrade staff; Australia’s New Colombo Plan scholar, Alana Tolman; current Bruneian students studying in Australia and representatives of the Brunei-Australia Association to ensure that all questions about life and studying in Australia could be answered.
Ministry of Education officials were also present to answer questions regarding the terms and management of student’s scholarships and loans.
“An Australian tertiary qualification will put these students ahead of the pack when they are ready to start their professional careers. They will benefit from Australian universities’ innovative teaching practices, world-class research facilities, and a truly international student experience,” said the High Commissioner.
The High Commissioner added that the students will later return to a strong Brunei-Australian alumni community who provide great examples of what they can achieve with an Australian tertiary qualification behind them.
During the event, the Senior Manager of Australian Trade Commission, Josie Abdullah, presented a guide to studying and living in Australia. It covered facts about the country, information on academic year, qualifications and duration of study and various related issues.
Australia, according to Josie Abdullah, is the first country in the world to protect international students with legislation, and the Education Services for Overseas Students (ESOS) Act which supports pathways and lifelong learning, ensures national standards for students services and facilities.
All institutions and courses approved for international students are on the Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students (CRICOS).
The students present have successfully obtained placements at Australian tertiary institutions either under the Brunei Government scholarship scheme or new student loan scheme.
In coming months, the students will be starting the next stages of their education at universities across Australia, settling in to new cities, new housing, and new lives.