Friendship ceremonies welcome more than 10000 international students to Brisbane

Brisbane’s Lord Mayoral International Student Friendship Ceremonies marked their 25th incarnation today, having welcomed around 10,000 overseas students to the city since beginning in 2012.

Lord Mayor Graham Quirk officiated at the quarterly ceremony at City Hall, which re-affirmed the city’s support of the 600 international students who attended.

Friendship Ceremony

Cr Quirk said he was proud of Brisbane’s world-ranked education providers and its reputation as one of Australia’s most inclusive study destinations.

“This ceremony places an emphasis on offering a warm welcome to our international students and celebrates Brisbane’s position as having one of the most diverse student populations in Australia,” he said.

“We now have 78,000 international student enrolments annually from more than 160 countries.

“Our city prides itself on its friendly and supportive character, encouraging students to exceed at their studies and prepare for the careers of their choices.”

Cr Quirk said the Study Brisbane program facilitated by Brisbane Marketing aimed to enhance international students’ stay in the city.

Friendship Ceremony

As part of the program, Brisbane’s International Student Ambassadors work with Study Brisbane to share their experiences of studying and living in the city.

This year, the ambassadors’ social media audience combined with Study Brisbane’s Facebook page reached nearly 240,000 prospective students, peers and families.

There are 44 international student ambassadors from 34 countries, making it one of the largest student ambassador programs in Australia. Brisbane has appointed 280 ambassadors since the program began in 2009.

Study Brisbane also partners with graduate job-service provider Ribit to organise Student Connect events, bringing students and employers together to help facilitate career paths and employment opportunities.

Other initiatives include supporting the Brisbane Student Hub - which provides free information, advice and referrals on healthcare, employment, budget management, accommodation and legal services – and a dedicated airport welcome program that helps orientate incoming international students to Brisbane.

Additionally, Study Brisbane works with universities, state and private schools, vocational education and training providers, English language colleges and accommodation providers to promote the high standard of education in the city.