ACICIS launches new tourism and agriculture programs in Indonesia with $3.6 million from New Colombo Plan
PERTH – Tuesday, August 29, 2017. Funding of $3.6 million from the Australian Government will boost Australian undergraduate students studying in Indonesia with the Australian Consortium for In-Country Indonesian Studies (ACICIS).
Minister for Foreign Affairs, Julie Bishop, and Minister for Education and Training, Simon Birmingham, last week announced a dramatic increase in New Colombo Plan (NCP) funding to encourage Australian undergraduates to study and intern in the Indo-Pacific. In total, the Government announced $36 million in new NCP funding to support over 13,000 Australian undergraduates to study in the region in 2018-19. Of the approximately 13,000 grants announced on Friday, more than two thousand are earmarked for study in Indonesia.
The funding for ACICIS will provide 734 mobility grants and 198 internship grants to support students from the consortium’s 25 Australian member universities in a wide range of fields including law, business and commerce, international relations, and development studies. In early 2019 ACICIS will launch two new short courses in Indonesia: a six-week professional practicum for tourism and hospitality students and another for students of agriculture and related disciplines.
In addition to the $3.6 million in new funding, ACICIS will receive in 2018 a further $727,100 for the second and third years of multi-year NCP projects announced in 2015 and 2016. This will support a further 197 students and ensure the continued sustainability of five ACICIS study options developed with previous NCP support. These include short courses in law, public health, Indonesian language, and creative arts and design, as well as a semester program for agriculture students based in Bogor, West Java.
Speaking from her office in Yogyakarta, ACICIS Resident Director, Elena Williams welcomed NCP support for a new ACICIS short course catering to Australian tourism and hospitality students.
“With its huge population, geographic proximity to Australia, and recent liberalisation of foreign investment restrictions, Indonesia represents a dynamic environment for Australian tourism students seeking to cultivate professional experience and networks in Southeast Asia”, Ms Williams said.
“Indonesia attracts millions of international tourists annually – including over a million Australian travellers last year alone.”
“When you add to this mix the growing domestic market for Indonesia’s tourism and hospitality services, catering to an expanding consumer class travelling and sight-seeing within the archipelago’s 17,000 islands, you have a hugely diverse tourism and hospitality sector for Australian students to experience.”
ACICIS Consortium Director, Professor David T. Hill AM, thanked the Australian Government for its continuing support for ACICIS. “It’s a further endorsement of the ‘consortium model’ of outbound student mobility that ACICIS has pioneered since the mid-1990s”, he added.
“By drawing on the collective resources of its 25 Australian consortium member universities, ACICIS maintains a permanent in-country infrastructure in Indonesia that benefits all members”, he said.
ACICIS study programs in Indonesia are sustainable over the long-term – even in niche disciplines – by drawing on the combined student populations of the consortium’s entire membership.
“Sadly often programs developed by a single university fold after a few years due to insufficient or irregular student demand, or the departure of a particularly passionate faculty member,” Professor Hill said. “With a consortia approach, like ACICIS, these new study options are sustainable over decades.”
The New Colombo Plan Mobility Program has already supported 325 Australian undergraduate students to undertake ACICIS programs in Indonesia since 2015. ACICIS has also supported numerous New Colombo Plan Scholars to undertake semester-long study in Indonesia.
The Australian Consortium for ‘In-Country’ Indonesian Studies known as ACICIS (pronounced “Ah-Chee-Chis”) has been opening doors to tertiary institutions throughout Indonesia since 1994. Today ACICIS is the longest running provider of in-country Indonesian study programs for Australian university students and the primary mechanism through which Australian students pursue study in Indonesia for academic credit. The ACICIS consortium currently counts among its membership twenty-five Australian universities (including all of Australia’s Group of Eight) as well as overseas centres-of-excellence in the field of Indonesian and Southeast Asian Studies such as SOAS University of London and Leiden University. The consortium’s activities are coordinated by a national secretariat hosted by The University of Western Australia. For more information, please visit: www.acicis.edu.au
For further media comment, please contact:
Ms Janelle May
ACICIS Secretariat Officer
+61 8 6488 6679