Council’s Office of Economic Development is driving an initiative to harness Ipswich’s strengths as a leading international student destination.

There is great potential in the international student market for Ipswich.

In 2017, the 520 international students hosted by the city provided $10 million of value-added to the local economy and supported the equivalent of 72 full-time jobs.

The Ipswich region currently holds a 0.5 per cent share of Queensland’s international education and training market. The sector has grown 25 per cent over five years in Ipswich.

To drive the growth of this sector, OED is leading the Ipswich Region Education Consortium (IREC) which includes TAFE Qld South West, Union Institute of Language, USQ, and is supported by a range of local schools and Springfield City Group.

The coordinator of IREC is OED Senior Industry Development Officer Tamanna Monem. She said as a region, Ipswich offers the full spectrum of education offerings, including English Language Intensive Courses for overseas students, Vocational Education and Training, University and schools.

Other key attributes include affordable tuition and living expenses, close proximity to Brisbane and access to key industries, such as defence and aerospace, advanced manufacturing, food and agribusiness, health, transport and logistics and energy.

With support from the Queensland Government’s Trade and Investment Queensland and its IET Partnership Fund, IREC undertook a feasibility study. This led to the development of the Study Ipswich program targeted at increasing international student participation.

Study Ipswich aims to connect industries with education providers to meet students’ employability needs and provide an enhanced student experience – as well as influence growth of industry and the knowledge economy.

Economic Development and Digital City Committee Chairman Councillor Paul Tully said IREC were now looking forward to having local education providers test out the Study Ipswich program.

He said working together as an Ipswich region education cluster was about engagement. “It’s an industry-driven exercise so they have ownership,” he said.

international students in Ipswich in 2017

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growth of international education sector over five years in Ipswich

Main picture: USQ students Jerry Manuel, Gilyan James and Joice Kurian Joseph. Credit USQ Photography.

Below: Nisha Thapa and Samikshya Paudel are studying nursing at USQ Ipswich. Credit USQ Corp Comms.

It’s been a good place for me to study and learn new things.

People are very friendly, know how to respect each other and it’s a safe environment for me to study which encourages me a lot.

The facilities at USQ are really good while the lecturers are very supportive.

I chose to study nursing because it’s a good profession that you can learn every skill from communication to leadership.

After university my plan is to return to my home country and apply the skills I have learnt at USQ to help people in my country.

Samikshya Paudel

Bachelor of Nursing Student, USQ Ipswich

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