Cairns campus commitment a gamechanger for international student market
Demand for Cairns as an international study destination will surge following a $50m commitment to build a new CQUniversity campus in the Cairns CBD.
That’s according to Study Cairns President Janine Bowmaker, who says an increase in local tertiary education options will send a strong signal to the international student market.
“Cairns is already a highly desirable international education destination, with two universities and our unique combination of reef, rainforest and cosmopolitan living,” Mrs Bowmaker said.
“While closed international borders have had a significant impact on our ability to attract students to Cairns-based institutions, this week’s announcement is the latest sign that Cairns is well established and more than ready to support international student demand.
“CQUniversity’s expanded Cairns campus will host up to 4000 students at any given time, a 100% increase on the university’s current local capacity of 2000.
“While many of these places will be taken up by Far North Queensland students, this significant expansion means international students now have even more options to study in Cairns.
“Combine that with the Queensland Government’s pledge to reopen borders to international students in January 2022, and you have a ‘perfect storm’ of positive developments that will see Cairns’ international education businesses back on track for 2022 and beyond.
“With the Queensland Student Arrival Plan now being endorsed by the Federal Government, the return of international students to Cairns is imminent, and that’s very exciting news for our region.”
Mrs Bowmaker said international students contributed to the social and cultural diversity of Cairns and Far North Queensland and were an integral component of the hospitality and tourism employment sector, as well as contributing significant economic benefits.
She said it was now critical that broader support for the CQUniversity Cairns campus project was secured, to ensure construction could proceed as quickly as possible.
“The new CQUniversity Cairns campus is one of our most critical regional infrastructure projects leading up to the next federal election,” Mrs Bowmaker said.
“Education is key to the recovery and future survival of our region. I encourage others to commit to funding this vital project, so that we can lock in more tertiary study options for both domestic and international students in the Far North”.