Coming of age for student friendship ceremony

LMISFC

The 21st Lord Mayor’s International Student Friendship Ceremony saw a welcoming hand extended to nearly 800 students in Brisbane on 3 November.

Since the launch of the International Student Friendship Ceremonies in 2012, Lord Mayor Graham Quirk has presented Certificates of Friendship to more than 10,000 students from around the globe.

“The 21st staging of this event for international students really represents a coming of age,” Cr Quirk said.

“The ceremony allows Brisbane to showcase itself as one of the world’s most welcoming and friendly cities for international students.

“We want students to know that our city is an attractive alternative ‘home’ for those looking to expand their horizons aboard.

“With over 75,000 international student enrolments, Brisbane offers quality education, world-class institutions, affordable accommodation and an enviable lifestyle.”

Cr Quirk said international students contributed $3.7 billion annually to the economy and, with the addition of housing, travel and general living expenses, this figure grew closer to $4 billion.

The 21st ceremony saw five international students inducted as work experience coaches in the NAB AFL Auskick Program, in a partnership between Australian Football League Queensland, MDA Ltd and Study Brisbane.

School-aged children are able to learn ball-skills through the Auskick program in an exciting, social and safe environment via weekly coaching sessions.

The five international students from China, India, Chile and the Philippines were selected for their AFL skills and ability as cultural ambassadors to interact with children, promoting opportunities for mutual respect and understanding.

“This partnership provides us with an opportunity to work closely with MDA Ltd and Study Brisbane to achieve positive community outcomes,” AFL Queensland CEO Dean Warren said.

“The AFL is committed to developing a workforce that is truly reflective of the diverse communities in which we work, and providing international students with work experience is part of that.

“There is no better way to introduce international students to Australia than through AFL; our country’s only indigenous football code.”

The Study Brisbane Program facilitated by Brisbane Marketing aims to make the decision to enrol into study effortless, by promoting the high standard of education offered by universities, state and private schools, vocational education and training providers and English language colleges in Brisbane.

Additionally, the Brisbane International Student Ambassador program encourages student leaders to share their journey via social media platforms.

The ambassadors use social media to connect with families overseas and share their experiences of studying in Brisbane. Applications for the 2017 intake are now open.

The next Lord Mayor’s International Student Friendship Ceremony will be held early in the new year.