Strong educational ties with Australia

A plenary session moderated by Fay (second right) with panelists (from left) McMahon, Cheng and Ooi at the Asean Australia Education Dialogue 2019 at Royale Chulan Hotel in George Town.

MALAYSIA has the highest number of international student enrolment in Australia compared with other Asean countries.

Education Ministry’s Higher Education Department director Prof Dr Rahmah Ahmad Osman (pic) said there were 28,000 Malaysian students studying in Australia as of September last year.

“The highest number of international student enrolment in Australia from Asean countries comes from Malaysia, followed by Vietnam and Thailand.

“Separately, there are three Australian universities in Malaysia, and around 22,000 Malaysian students are taking Australian programmes here, ” she said during the Asean-Australia Education Dialogue (AAED) 2019 at Royale Chulan Hotel in Penang recently.

Prof Rahmah said the Asean-Australia Strategic Partnership 2015 to 2019 marked the establishment of an action plan under the socio-cultural cooperation between Asean countries and Australia.

“Through the partnership, there are mobility programmes, mutual recognition agreements, cooperation in basic education as well as assimilation of the usage of information and communications technology (ICT).

“It also elevates the standard of Technical and Vocational Education Training (TVET), and shares quality information on lifelong learning and joint research and grants, ” she said.

Various speakers from overseas and local educators also shared their thoughts on how to inculcate Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) 2030 into the education system for a better and brighter future.

AAED convenor and Australian Corporate Advisory firm Asean Focus Group (AFG VG) director Michael Fay said the dialogue brought together representatives and partners from Australia and Asean countries to deepen their relationship.

“The only way to succeed in international education and the only way to be around for long-term is to be absolutely committed to quality assurance.

“It is not something imposed from the outside, but something that comes from within the organisation, the DNA of the institution that is involved in education and the people who populate those institutions, ” he said in his welcome remarks.

Australian High Commission deputy commissioner Michael Growder acknowledged the importance of education in a society.

“The aim that we are here today is to discuss the sustainability of the education industry.

“Nothing is more important than education in society.

“There is a need for partnerships between the education industry in different countries, ” he said.

Later in the evening, participants of the Asean Australia Education Dialogue were treated to a gala dinner at the hotel.

There, they exchanged more views through a buffet spread of local and western fare while dancers dressed in traditional costumes performed on stage.

Also present were Times Higher Education regional director (APAC) Julie Wilkens McMahon, Sunway College pre-university studies director Cheng Mien Wee and Penang Institute executive director Datuk Dr Ooi Kee Beng.

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