14 January 2015
Australian university students to complete placements in Kirakira
Eight undergraduate students from Australia’s Bond University arrived in Solomon Islands this week to undertake research placements in Kirakira, Makira province.
The month-long placements have been funded by the Australian Government under the New Colombo Plan which aims to increase the number of young Australian undergraduates studying and undertaking internships in the Indo-Pacific region.
Australian High Commissioner Andrew Byrne congratulated the students on being awarded the placements under the New Colombo Plan at a welcome reception earlier this week.
“It’s great to see so much interest from Australian students in this new initiative, particularly in Solomon Islands – one of our closest neighbours,” he said.
“This experience will provide you all with a unique insight into the development challenges faced by Solomon Islanders”.
The students are the first cohort of undergraduates from Bond University to undertake research placements in Kirakira under the New Colombo Plan.
It is expected that up to one hundred students will have the opportunity to complete similar placements in Kirakira over the coming 18 months as part of the initiative.
Students will complete a range of projects during their time in-country depending on their area of expertise – from undertaking work assignments at Kirakira hospital to designing and implementing sustainable development projects to benefit the local community.
The 2015 round of New Colombo Plan mobility grants will support an estimated 3,150 Australian undergraduate students to study in 32 locations across the Indo-Pacific region – from India in the west, to Mongolia in the north and the Cook Islands in the east.
Scholarships have also been awarded to 69 outstanding students from across Australia to study in 17 locations of the Indo-Pacific.