Update from Study Cairns President Carol Doyle

— 7 Jun, 2019 —

Update from Study Cairns President Carol Doyle

With the Federal election a distant memory, at  Study Cairns we can start to focus on building and attracting existing and new business with more certainty, without worrying about external influences that may or may not affect the international education and training sector.

Over the last couple of months, Study Cairns has been focused on two key areas: reviewing our marketing plans and how we brand Cairns as a study destination, plus promoting and implementing our CONNECTS employability projects to international students and Cairns businesses.

Study Cairns held a branding workshop with our members and Study Queensland to choose new and revised themes aimed at positioning Cairns as an education and training focused city in our future marketing plans. There is more to come on this over the next few months when our marketing plan is formed.

Both CQUniversity and James Cook University are developing new and existing course offerings for international students which will position Cairns strongly in an ever-competitive international marketplace. The success of our universities in attracting long-term international students to Cairns is key to underlining the future success and growth of the international education and training sector in our city. Each long-term student is worth about $45,000 directly into the Cairns economy, with additional flow-on of income from visiting friends and relatives.

Michelle Behsman, our executive officer, attended the ANZA Workshop in Darwin in April, which was followed by a successful familiarisation visit to Cairns by selected agents.
We appreciated what Michelle and our members who supported this event either by providing in-kind support, contributing to the overall costs, driving the agents to their destination and just generally making sure everyone had a great time. Thanks to the support given by our accommodation providers.

We were able to place these agents in purpose-built student accommodation, showcasing the high standard of facilities that Cairns offers, particularly to long-term students.
During the start of the year, Study Cairns consolidated future plans for the Cairns Student Hub.

We were lucky enough to have Tim Cliento join us for a few months, bringing his experience from working with Study Queensland and setting a solid framework to build the CONNECTS project. A warm welcome to Gaby Thomasz, who has now taken over the reins as Cairns Student Hub coordinator. Gaby and Danny have been busily consulting with students to improve the weekly activities and events for students, with exciting plans for the future.

The initial CONNECTS pilot program is almost complete, with two business project plans completed for Kuranda Tourism and Study Cairns. We held an energised Hackathon run by Megan at Gen-in and have just commenced two internships.

The Japan market is still a high priority for the Cairns region and Study Cairns hosts a trade mission in-country every two years to revitalise the Cairns brand with education agents, schools and universities. This year we also intend to promote the long-term options for study and pathway programs to higher education to meet the changing needs of Japanese students.

If you are considering joining the Cairns Education Mission to Japan in September, please lock in the dates of September 10 in Osaka and September 11 in Tokyo.

This mission will be run with the support of Trade and Investment Queensland and TTNQ. We are in the process of finalising the costs, venues and other aspects and will be releasing more information soon.

The Chamber of Commerce and immigration agents have worked hard over the past year to successfully renew the Designated Area Migration Agreement. The busy international student season is upon us and I am sure that the student experience in Cairns will be enjoyable and memorable.

Carol Doyle
President, Study Cairns