Message from the Director
Good grief - where did November go! Well, at TGS we have barely had time to scratch ourselves with the first of our amazing interns arriving and keeping us busy. As I write, our Deakin Communications and International Studies students are halfway through their 8 week internships. We have also welcomed 5 students from Coventry University, fresh after a semester exchange at Deakin, and in the past week our engineers from both Unimelb and Deakin have landed, together with a few assorted interns from our partners International Internships and CIS Australia. Oh, I also nearly forgot our Latrobe pre-service teachers who spent a month at Taylors International School under the Global Education Practicum program, and have just left us.
It's been a hectic month settling over 40 students, our largest cohort ever, especially pre-xmas. It has of course had its challenges, but the satisfaction comes from seeing the students make the most of opportunities. Communications students have had articles published on company websites and for clients, been involved in events including one for Adidas that came with some new gear, and have generally had to navigate the city, the workplace, the food and the heat, while adjusting to sharing with some complete strangers! During this period, we also host a number of academics from these programs who visit hosts and check on progress of students. We are all so proud of how most have worked to face challenges, take ownership of issues, and seek help to resolve problems when they arise. They will all sleep through January!
As the year winds down across campuses in Australia, at TGS we are not only kept busy here with students, but with planning for 2019, assisting partner universities with their outbound marketing strategies for 2019, and helping plan and write proposals in preparation for NCP bids for 2020. We will also play a role during the APAIE conference, and are in planning and assisting with preparations for associated events with the Aussie High Comm, The Global Leadership League, and other international education organisations seeking to engage with delegates, the local international education sector and potential ASEAN affiliates.
So it's back to work for me, as I wish you all a hot and dry summer, and try to suppress my envy! 😊
What are our Interns up to?
Well, where do I start? Besides their "day jobs", students have been involved in a myriad of opportunities both within the internship and beyond, such as discussions with the sports Minister from WA, meeting the Aussie Women's Cricket Team, meeting and having photos with the Aussie High Commissioner AND Malaysia's Deputy Prime Minister. Some have travelled with their hosts for work to other states - Johor Bahru, Kuantan, Penang, and as a group visited Melaka, the historical centre and birthplace of Malaysia. Female interns were invited to a women's travel conference one weekend, complimentary, where they met Datin Paduka Marina Mahathir, attended a travel writing workshop, heard from some amazing women from across the globe, and even took a self-defense class! Many took advantage of a professional development workshop we ran one evening about LinkedIn as your CV, run by a member of the Malaysian Australia Business Council, and many will attend MABC networking this week, and the Alumni Conversations series presented by DFAT at the Australian High Commission next week. Interns have enjoyed Deepavali celebrations with work colleagues, attended concerts with free tickets shared by hosts, and enjoyed the constant eating and trying of new foods which is a cultural necessity, requiring many hours in the gym to counteract.
Last week I was very pleased to deliver orientation In Kuching, Sarawak, for the Deakin University Conservation and Environmental Sustainability Borneo Study Tour, which is now officially TGS's longest running program, starting in 2012 in Sabah. In 2013 it was changed to Sarawak, where it has remained, and continues to provide the most amazing experiences across a range of sites across Sarawak, where they have built substantial relationships over the years. Dr John White, the Academic Coordinator and Tour Leader, is able to adjust the program as required and prepare students each year because of these relationships, and because he knows exactly what to expect. This program has never received any funding, yet has a waiting list each year, with students chosen in first semester. This program epitomises the value of relationships with third-party providers and in-country hosts and stakeholders, that ensures students receive a valuable educational program built on years of experience. For group is making its way back from the Bario Highlands, the site of a number of Deakin programs in Cultural heritage, Visual Arts and Architecture.
Need to scale up your outbound numbers?
It’s never too early to start thinking about NCP bids! Do you have an idea for something you haven’t had time to develop? What about programs with a particularly Asian focus, perhaps target a niche area where an academic might not know where to start? Why not develop an interdisciplinary volunteer program in leadership that is for credit - very popular with students from some of our partners. Or a disciplinary focused program that might actually have an impact, while students apply their knowledge to a project that requires an issue solved.
How about some of these:
· “Intro to ASEAN through Malaysia” a program aimed at providing insight into the geopolitical and economic region that is increasingly important to Australia?
· “Tribal sounds and symphonies” – a musical study tour that encompasses indigenous, contemporary and classical music in an Asian setting – can be modified to include performing arts
· Volunteer building projects with indigenous communities with a focus on leadership and community development, in either Malaysia or Vietnam?
· Amazing opportunities for tourism and hospitality that encompass a number of locations in the region, utilizing better known chains, and more boutique local brands.
· Food science and nutrition in SE Asia, comparing developed, and developing countries , including the world’s Halal epicenter
·Public health, nursing and allied health industries such as oral hygiene in Borneo, working with indigenous councils to better educate indigenous peoples to improve their lives.
·Get your pre-service teachers off-shore for accredited practicum, freeing up some days in your local schools (and saving the cost of paying for those!)
Whatever your idea, run it by us and see where it might lead. Email Jan for a complimentary consultation – you know how excited she gets about this stuff!
ISANA - December 4-7 // Sydney
APAIE - March 25-29 // Kuala Lumpur
Global Internship Conference - July 2-5 // Auckland (Pictured)