Australia and India Continue Strengthening Education Links
|09 November, 2023
Indian and Australian ties are reaching new heights amidst a recent visit by Australian education leaders to India. This visit was led by the Australian Minister of Education, Jason Clare, who visited the country earlier this year. Indonesia is also to be visited, as Australia recognises both India and Indonesia as “two economic superpowers in the making,” as stated by Clare.
The meeting between Clare and his Indian counterpart, Shri Dharmendra Pradhan, will not be the last, as they are expected to meet again for the Australia-India Education and Skills Council, which occurs annually.
One of the main points discussed was the importance of not only focusing on Indian students coming to Australia but also on Australian institutions going to India. Before preparing for a visit to two Australian universities opening in Gujarat International Finance Tec-City, also known as GIFT City, Clare said: “International education isn't a one-way street.” These campuses are for Deakin University and the University of Wollongong. Both of these campuses are expected to accept students in mid-2024.
This step to open both campuses in India shows how highly regarded Australian universities are in India. It is also a great opportunity for Indian students looking to get the Australian educational experience from their own country, as many students cannot afford to travel. Clare also stated in an interview that India’s policy for 2035, which targets 50% of young people enrolled in higher education, would be a great opportunity for Australia.
Another institution planning its footsteps in India is WSU, which has plans to establish a university in India. If successful, it will tremendously impact research and outreach in India. As stated by WSU vice-chancellor Barney Glover, “That’s really what we’re hoping to achieve—more Indian students studying literally in Australia as well as having a very significant presence in India. It also gives us a base for our collaborative research and outreach in India."
If WSU’s Indian campus is approved, it will focus on teaching STEM degrees, which will employ both local and Australian academics as well as enrol over 1000 students in the first five years.
Glover has also added, “They are going through a huge transformation as a nation and how they think about the future for India. As a consequence of that, the place of education and skills development has grown enormously in the minds of the Indian government and the Indian population”.
There are also currently more than 400 partnerships between Indian and Australian institutions, some of which ensure mobility. Australia-India Institute chief executive Lisa Singh has stated, “Two-way mobility of students between Australia and India is another growth area for universities. The more these institutions do to build those linkages, the better”.