Australian High Commission


Malaysia to welcome 278 Australian students under the New Colombo Plan in 2016

278 Australian undergraduates will study in Malaysia in 2016 under the Australian Government’s New Colombo Plan.

"I am delighted Malaysia will welcome six of Australia’s best and brightest undergraduate students as New Colombo Plan scholars to live, study and undertake internships in 2016," Australia High Commissioner Rod Smith said.

"The strong interest of Australian students in studying here reflects the bonds of friendship and opportunity that exist between Australia and Malaysia," he continued.

Four of the students will be studying at the University Malaya and two will study at Taylor’s University.

New Colombo Plan scholarships are highly prestigious, with only 100 awarded in 2016, and recognise students’ exceptional academic performance, community engagement and commitment to deepening relationships with Australia’s neighbours in the Indo-Pacific.

Australian Foreign Affairs Minister Julie Bishop said New Colombo Plan scholars act as ambassadors for their community during their studies and build friendships and networks that would last a lifetime. "Australia is investing in the next generation of leaders who will continue to advance and build on our important bilateral relations in the Indo-Pacific region," she said.

In addition to the scholars, Malaysia will also host 272 Australian undergraduates from thirteen Australian universities on short term mobility programs. These students will undertake a range of internships, practicums, projects and training programs during 2016. Their programs will cover a broad array of disciplines including education, business management, engineering, social services and cultural studies, architecture and urban development, sciences and accounting.

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 study and undertake internships in the region.

The Australian Government has committed $100 million in new funding over five years to implement the New Colombo Plan.

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

Background information on New Colombo Plan Scholars studying in Malaysia in 2016

Susanna Batchelder, a Bachelor of Arts/Bachelor of Education student from Macquarie University will study at the University of Malaya fox six months and intern with a development research and consultancy company.

Thomas Engelhardt from the University of South Australia will spend eight months at the University of Malaya as part of his Bachelor of International Relations/Bachelor of Journalism studies and intern with a media outlet.

Georgia Johnson will come to Malaysia for eight months to study at the University of Malaya as part of her Bachelor of Marketing and Communications degree from the University of South Australia and undertake an internship in the field of marketing and branding.

The University of Malaya will also host Valerian McCaskill of Monash University for six months of his Bachelor of Electrical Engineering and Commerce studies, during which time he will also intern in the field of power engineering or telecommunications.

Fiona Bergstrum, studying a Bachelor of Education (Early Childhood) degree at the Queensland University of Technology, will attend Taylor’s University and intern at an international school during her four months in Malaysia.

Matthew Page – also from the Queensland University of Technology – will spend a year in Malaysia and go to Taylor’s University as part of his Bachelor of Business studies. He will undertake an internship in the field of export logistics and management.