AAERI held its first reception in Australia on the sidelines of the just concluded AIEC conference. The reception was in some parts a sequel to the event that was held in Delhi in August where DIBP (New Delhi Post) had addressed a fairly large gathering of In-country members of the Education Providers along with Education agencies. Several travelling Australian Education Providers too had attended the event.
I refer to the Melbourne event as a sequel since it too had DIBP (Canberra) addressing a large gathering comprising senior members from the International teams of Education Providers and the visiting AAERI members. The focus was once again India and Nepal.
Developments since the introduction of the SSVF was the key focus at both events in the DIBP presentation.
In Melbourne, DIBP further shared updated statistics. What I found interesting was the 122% growth in VET students despite a mere 36% visa grant rate. Imagine if the grant had been more closer to the median, we could have seen a significant increase in overall student numbers well beyond the 9%. I remain positive still since the stats are mostly from the pre-SSVF period when the visa processes was fairly skewed in the unfavourable direction for the 572 sub-class. I do believe that with a focussed approach, quality TAFE institutions can once again hope for a higher visa success rate in the current SSVF period with clearer funding requirements in place. I am also a little surprised with a mere 24% visa grant rate for the school sector though overall student numbers remain understandably small from India.
I shall let you draw your own conclusions and thus sharing the full presentation video of the DIBP presentation sourced from the AAERI FB page.
At the AAERI event, I was also included to share my views in my capacity as the past president of AAERI and the current head of the visa subcommittee. As usual, my address was un-penned and I was determined to flag some of the major concerns that has bothered me about the industry and the future of Australian Education in the Indian market. As expected I did put it out loud and clear. I share that brief address here too for record…
The AAERI event was much more than just DIBP presentations on the Indian market. The fact that AAERI, despite all odds, has survived 20 years and continue to be a role model for various self-regulatory frameworks not just for Australia around the world but also for the other countries is by itself an acknowledgement of the position it occupies as a stake holder. Dr Tom Calma, the current Chancellor of University of Canberra was the chief guest at both the event. He is certainly credited with having conceived the idea of AAERI. Mr Rahul Gandhi, not of the Congress Party, as the current President of AAERI has done a commendable job of building on the foundations and I invite all subscribers to view the various speeches on the AAERI Facebook Page.