Notre Dame students receive passport for global learning experiences

The Timor-Leste immersion program, delivered through Notre Dame’s School of Education in Sydney, is just one of the service-learning programs being funded by the New Colombo Plan in 2018.

25 August 2017

Eighty-three students from The University of Notre Dame Australia will benefit from a total of $280,500 in funding secured by the University through the Federal Government’s New Colombo Plan (NCP), grants that will support undergraduate students participating in transformative learning and immersion experiences in the Indo-Pacific Region in 2018.

Announced by the Minister for Foreign Affairs, The Hon Julie Bishop MP, and Senator Simon Birmingham, on Friday 25 August 2017, the funding will support short-term and semester-length international learning and immersion opportunities in a multitude of destinations including Timor-Leste, Japan and India.

Notre Dame’s short-term immersion programs supported by this funding include the following:

  • School of Law, Fremantle and Sydney Campuses, Law Immersion – Cambodia
  • School of Education, Sydney Campus, Service-learning Immersion – Timor-Leste
  • School of Nursing & Midwifery, Fremantle Campus, Clinical Immersion – Vietnam
  • School of Arts & Sciences, Fremantle Campus, Service-learning Immersion – Cambodia
  • Schools of Education and Business, Sydney Campus, Service-learning Immersion – India
  • School of Education, Fremantle Campus, Service-learning Immersion – Cambodia

The programs offer the opportunity for Notre Dame Education students to work in classrooms with some of Cambodia’s most vulnerable and neglected children. Nursing & Midwifery students, under the supervision of Notre Dame Registered Nurses, will develop their clinical skills and cultural awareness while working alongside Vietnamese Doctors and Nurses in Mai Chua District Hospital and Van Village Clinic. Law students undertaking Khmer language lessons, will visit the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia where the Khmer Rouge Trials have taken place and visit, and complete work experience within, various NGOs.

In addition to the short-term learning opportunities, $5000 grants are available for students seeking to study overseas for a semester. Two grants will be available to study on exchange at Sophia University, Notre Dame’s partner institution in Japan. A third grant will be made available to students seeking to study at Fu Jen Catholic University in Taiwan.

“The University is delighted to once again secure NCP funding and we look forward to many of our students taking up these exciting international learning opportunities in such vibrant parts of the world,” said Professor Peta Sanderson, Pro Vice Chancellor International, at Notre Dame.

“These experiences, beyond the classroom and outside comfort zones, while still having the support of Notre Dame staff often see students return with increased confidence, global awareness and a commitment to return to the region in the future.

“An international study experience, particularly a semester-length exchange can be such an important part of a student’s career development. It can put them at an advantage in the job market and in any future study aspirations. Being able to demonstrate to a potential employer that you have experienced study and working life in a different country can be very valuable.”

The NCP is a signature initiative of the Federal Government which aims to lift knowledge of the Indo-Pacific region in Australia by supporting Australian undergraduate students to study and undertake internships in the region. The program hopes to deliver a transformational and deeper experience for students through close engagement with the cultures and languages of the Indo-Pacific region.

For more information about study opportunities supported by the NCP, as well as other international exchange programs at Notre Dame, please visit


Beth Kennedy: Tel (08) 9433 0764; Mob 0447 038 958; beth.kennedy
Leigh Dawson: Tel (08) 9433 0569; Mob 0405 441 093;