Federal Member for Bonner, Ross Vasta today announced two undergraduate students from the electorate have been awarded Australian Government scholarships to live, study and intern in the Indo-Pacific.

“These local students have won two of only 105 prestigious New Colombo Plan scholarships to support our nation’s best and brightest to engage with our region,” Mr Vasta said.

Shaun Milligan, a Holland Park West local and Bachelor of Laws and Bachelor of Business student from Griffith University, will undertake legal studies in dispute resolution at the University of Hong Kong for one semester.

“I believe the NCP experience will foster relationships, both personal and professional, that will last long into my career. These relationships will grant me exposure to intercultural perspectives and dialogue, and the capacity to increase my proficiency in regards to Indo-Pacific work practices,” Mr Milligan said.

Wynnum local Michael Lucas, a Bachelor of Engineering and Bachelor of Arts student from the University of Queensland, will be undertaking full-time Indonesian language immersion at Universitas Gadjah Mada for one semester.

The New Colombo Plan is a signature initiative of the Australian Government to lift knowledge of the Indo-Pacific by supporting Australian undergraduates to study and intern in the region.

“New Colombo Plan scholarships recognise students’ exceptional academic performance, community engagement and commitment to deepening relationships with our neighbours in the Indo-Pacific,” Mr Vasta said.

“While overseas, New Colombo Plan scholars act as ambassadors for their communities, universities and indeed Australia. We can all be proud of our scholars’ achievements and look forward to their contribution to Australia’s relationship with the Indo-Pacific in the years ahead.”

New Colombo Plan 2017 scholars were announced this week by Minister for Foreign Affairs, the Hon Julie Bishop MP, and Minister for Education and Training, Senator the Hon Simon Birmingham.

“New Colombo Plan scholars will study in 17 Indo-Pacific locations in 2017, including Pakistan and Papua New Guinea for the first time,” Minister Bishop said.

“This reflects the continued strong demand for diverse study opportunities in our region.”

The NCP scholars will join more than 7,400 New Colombo Plan mobility grant recipients in 2017, taking the total number of students supported by the NCP in its first four years to 17,500.

“This is a remarkable achievement that reflects the commitment of the Government, our universities and business champions to invest in our young people and demonstrate our genuine commitment to long-term engagement with our region,” Minister Bishop said.

For more information on the New Colombo Plan visit www.dfat.gov.au/new-colombo-plan.

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