University of Newcastle speech pathology student Rebecca Amery will next year swap the leafy surrounds of the Callaghan campus for Vietnam's Hue University of Medicine and Pharmacy under a unique new scholarship program.
Ms Amery has been awarded a Prime Minister's Australia Asia Endeavour Award - a new scholarship providing opportunities for students to gain international experience and build professional networks in Asia.
She will be one of just 20 Australian undergraduate students to spend up to 12 months studying in Asia as part of their degree program, followed by at least three months in an internship or work placement.
"Speech pathology is an emerging discipline in Vietnam and there is a lack of normative speech and language data for Vietnamese children," Ms Amery said.
"This is one area that I would like to help address during my time studying there, in addition to looking at the cross-cultural competency of speech pathology students working with clients and patients for whom English is a second language."
Originally from Darwin, Ms Amery moved to Newcastle to study speech pathology and has just completed her third year.
"Verbal communication can often be taken for granted, but for people with communication and swallowing disorders, delayed speech and language development, cleft lip and palate, voice disorders and stuttering it can be a significant challenge.
"The opportunity to work with people in a developing country like Vietnam where access to a speech therapist is very limited, will be very rewarding."
The Prime Minister's Australia Asia Endeavour Awards provide financial assistance of up to $60,000 towards travel, tuition and internship contributions.
The aim of the awards were to build relationships between Australia and Asia through the development of internationally aware, skilled future leaders and the establishment of ongoing education and professional links.
The Prime Minister's Australia Asia Endeavour Awards were announced at a dinner in Canberra overnight.
A print quality image of Ms Amery is available on request.