More than 1000 international students set to start their university studies in Perth have been personally welcomed by the Governor of Western Australia at an inaugural event for the state.
In a move to help position Perth as a world-class international education city, the Honourable Kim Beazley AC hosted the official welcome event in the grounds of Government House last night, in partnership with StudyPerth.
The event was also attended by the Honourable Mark McGowan, Premier of Western Australia, as well as the Vice-Chancellors of WA’s five universities, including Curtin University’s Professor Deborah Terry, Edith Cowan University’s Professor Steve Chapman, Murdoch University’s Professor Eeva Leinonen, Notre Dame University’s Professor Celia Hammond and The University of Western Australia’s Professor Dawn Freshwater.
Mr Beazley said the welcome event was the first of its kind in WA and aimed to offer international university students, some accompanied by their parents, a warm welcome to Perth.
“I am proud and delighted to host our State’s first international student welcome event in the beautiful heritage-listed grounds of Government House,” Mr Beazley said.
“As well as showcasing Western Australia’s great hospitality, this initiative is a first step in better promoting Perth as an excellent place to study. Not only for students to realise truly rewarding education and career opportunities but also to enjoy a remarkably clean, safe, culturally diverse, and breathtakingly beautiful destination like no other.
“International students are helping to build our State’s future. They are critical to our diplomacy and also serve to enrich our own cultural appreciation and enlightenment. It is important that we celebrate them and their families, and ensure that their experience is enjoyable, with opportunities to learn more about our home and our people.”
StudyPerth Executive Director Phil Payne said the Governor, WA’s higher education sector and the State Government had worked together to support the event.
“We know Western Australia is a popular place for young people from all over the world to live, learn and launch their careers so this welcome event is all about making sure our students feel at home before the start of their university studies,” Mr Payne said.
“By working together, we are committed to strengthening Perth’s position as a world-class study destination and achieving our goal to welcome 100,000 international students to Perth by 2025.”
The international students who attended the inaugural ceremony hail from various countries including China, Japan, Korea, Indonesia, Vietnam, India, Italy and Brazil.
The welcome ceremony included an Australian barbecue for students, as well as performances by local talent from the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts and The University of Western Australia.
International education is WA’s second largest services sector - after tourism, generating about $1.9 billion for the State’s economy. But more importantly, international education is a very significant creator of jobs and the students themselves add enormously to the social and cultural fabric of the city.
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