$50,000 for budding student entrepreneurs

Media release | 23 August 2018

More than 250 international students from eight Australian universities are getting a crash course in entrepreneurialism at a four day event supported by StudyNSW and education and training organisation The FRANK Team.

Parliamentary Secretary Jonathan O’Dea MP said ‘INTERCHANGE 2018’ was helping international students develop entrepreneurial and professional skills.

“This fantastic event mentors international students to develop networking, communication and leadership skills. The NSW Government is contributing $50,000 to support INTERCHANGE as part of its efforts to grow the international student sector.

“International education is NSW’s largest services export worth over $11.2 billion and supporting more than 46,000 jobs. Last year we attracted over 300,000 enrolments and we expect this to continue to grow.”

INTERCHANGE 2018, held over four weekends from 4-23 August, sees students work in teams that are challenged to identify real life social problems that impact international students, solve them and then capture their ideas in a short video pitch.

Five shortlisted pitches will be made to a panel of judges at a gala event tonight with prizes awarded to the top three teams.

The FRANK Team Managing Director Natasha Munasinghe said international students faced various challenges, like navigating their way through language barriers, cultural differences and changing workforce structures.

“Through this program we are arming students with the leadership, confidence and creativity to face these challenges. Students are encouraged to solve real world problems, not just as employees but as business owners and entrepreneurs too.”

Parliamentary Secretary Jonathan O’Dea MP will assist with the judging and said projects like this benefited not just the students but society as a whole.

“Those who study in NSW not only get a world-class education but form lifelong personal and professional ties that deliver ongoing benefits to business and the community.”

Now in its third year, the program is open to international students from Australian Catholic University, Macquarie University, University of Newcastle, University of Sydney, Western Sydney University, UTS, UNSW, and University of Notre Dame.

Students in lecture at ACU