Global connections that transform our regions
The University of Newcastle holds a strong and proud connection with community. Since our founding days, the community and the institution have been transforming our region and influencing the lives of many, both nationally and as importantly - globally.
Internationalisation is an important aspect of UON’s educational fabric and contribution to our regions. Our alumni are global – 17% of our alumni live and work abroad and are the bridging partnerships between the University and global industries and businesses. The University and the broader community are justifiably proud of how they represent us all in their chosen fields.
Our alumni are equally proud of UON and the opportunities offered by the institution. Many of them reciprocate with the generosity of their time and experience through mentoring programs, networking opportunities, and reconnection with fellow graduates.
During the study years, student mobility provides highly valued global experiences. Since 2012, more than 5,000 undergraduate students from our university have studied abroad, taking the Newcastle name to the world. Many of these students were funded by the $5 million New Colombo Plan and the Endeavour Mobility government grants, won by the university through a highly competitive process.
In the same period, we welcomed more than 19,000 international students from over 120 countries. In 2016, UON recorded a whopping 45% increase in commencement from international students who chose our institution to pursue their aspirations of an undergraduate degree. Our growth in international students pursuing full degrees rose over 22% between 2015 and 2016, well above the sector and benchmark universities. This impressive growth placed the University of Newcastle in the top 10 in the country for positive growth.
This February, we welcomed yet another 1,000+ new international students. Of the scheduled international student load for 2018, the University exceeded this target by 16% for Q1, and commencing international enrolments grew an impressive 29% from 2017. We are currently tracking at a growth trend of 30% for the rest of the year.
This is incredible recognition of the continual upward trajectory of our university, both nationally and globally. UON has risen an impressive 74 places since 2013/14 in the QS World Universities Ranking – testimony to our continued influence and stance on the global higher education stage. The hundreds of scholars we welcome at the University from across the globe on an annual basis, impact the work we do here as much as our scholars who take their research and innovation globally.
Impact of internationalisation
The internationalisation of the UON experience is important to both the University, our regions and Australia more broadly.
International students and scholars make a significant difference to our university and our communities. From the moment they arrive, they are ambassadors of UON, and of our communities and our regions. With the accelerated technology we take for granted today, they are sharing their studies, their experiences and the beauty of our regions with their families, relatives, friends, and loved ones in real time. We cannot underestimate the positive impact this has for our regions.
The Australian Government acknowledged the value international students and scholars bring to Australia educationally, culturally, scholarly and economically through its decadal National Strategy for International Education, established in 2015 to strengthen the recognition of Australia’s education system. The Australia Government also launched a Global Alumni Strategy in the same year, celebrating the invaluable benefits our global alumni bring to Australia and to Australian businesses globally.
For the first time in the university history, we can see how a university-wide deliberate international education strategy brings to bear the benefits of bilateral student mobility and the win-win position which we enjoy. By creating opportunities for our students to be educated and exposed to an education experience outside of Australia, it is a once-in-a-lifetime gift of education. By welcoming international students, their families and friends to Newcastle, we are creating opportunities for young people to forge lifelong friendships with our communities and our region.
Thanks to the strength of a lifelong friendship, this year the inaugural 30 recipients of the Ma and Morley Scholarship Program started their journey as globally aware and socially conscious citizens. By the end of 2037, close to 500 Ma and Morley scholars and fellows will have had pursued their studies at the University of Newcastle. Imagine the difference to their lives, their exposure, their experience, their families, their communities, their regions and their networks. And imagine the differences they will have had made as proud members of our current 143,000 strong alumni communities in 143 countries.
In this rapidly emerging new world of higher education, an international education is no longer a luxury. It is there for the taking. The University of Newcastle is doing its fair share through a deliberate university-wide Global Partnership Plan since 2014. We are on a journey, albeit short, but we are definitely seeing and celebrating very swift and visible differences in our diverse and vibrant student communities.
All the best