Australian Embassy

Media release - 26 September 2016

Australian students show growing interest in Vietnam

340 Australian undergraduate students will study and undertake internships in Vietnam in 2017 under the Australian Government’s flagship New Colombo Plan education program.

This number has increased by over 35 per cent compared to 2016 and is more than double the number of students in 2015, when Vietnam first joined the New Colombo Plan program. In 2017, Vietnam ranks 7th among 38 eligible host countries/locations in the Indo-Pacific region in terms of number of students enrolled..

"The outcomes show Australian students’ increasing interest in Vietnam and this is a wonderful compliment to the strong and long-lasting education ties between our two countries,” said HE Mr Craig Chittick, Australian Ambassador to Vietnam.

"I strongly believe that the new insights and understanding about Vietnam as well as new friendships that Australian students have established here in Vietnam will benefit the bilateral relations between our two countries for a long time,” the Ambassador said.

NCP student Lauren Tropeano said “Vietnam was my first experience of South East Asia. It was a humid, beautiful, rewarding, friendship-building, career-confirming, and often challenging, whirlwind 4 weeks. Visiting and connecting with local and international NGOs provided a really unique perspective to complement the more theoretical aspects of my degree. It was also truly rewarding to interact with local people beyond the 'tourist' level. I hope it was my first trip to Vietnam of many more to come”.’ Tropeano, from the  University of Adelaide, was on a 4 week study tour in Vietnam in July 2016 under the New Colombo Plan program.

In 2017, students from 22 Australian universities will study and undertake internships at over 30 institutions in Vietnam in a broad range of areas including business management, education, health, engineering, hospitality, urban design and regional planning.

The New Colombo Plan is a signature initiative of the Australian Government to lift knowledge of the Indo-Pacific by supporting Australian undergraduate students to carry out part of their study and undertake internships in the region. By 2017 the total number of Australian undergraduate students who live, study and take up internships in countries in the Indo-Pacific region under the New Colombo Plan mobility program will exceed 17,000.

For more information on the New Colombo Plan, visit or follow @NewColomboPlan