A fact often overlooked, providing quality education services can work both ways – bringing students into the country or collaborating with local institutions in the students’ country of origin. Whether students want to experience life overseas or wish to continue studying closer to home, both options offer tremendous opportunities for Australian education providers through vocational training.
As the manufacturing sector in Southeast Asian countries boom, the requirement for well-trained and skilled workers is increasing too. Corporations are looking to enhance employee skills in areas like manufacturing, quality control, health, and safety. Many of them are even willing to pay for customized vocational training for their employees.
Rising living standards and an insatiable appetite for knowledge is what makes Asia the perfect destination for education providers. According to a recent report by Deloitte Access Economics, an Australian think tank, onshore student arrivals are set to rise from the current 650,000 enrollments to 940,000 by year 2025. Further, it says offshore opportunities could be ten times the size of the onshore projection.
Known offshore education providers include CPA Australia and institutes like Technical and Further Education (TAFE), among others. Accounting body CPA Australia has been in Southeast Asia for almost 60 years, offering vocational training and policy advice as well as courses and accreditation. They have ten offices in the region, with nearly a quarter of their staff based there.
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Moreover, this demand goes beyond individuals and corporations. TAFE Queensland has been expanding its operations in Indonesia, providing skills training for government departments like the Ministry of Manpower and Home Affairs.
Another education provider making waves in the market is Open Learning Australia, an online higher education platform. They have had over 300,000 students take courses with them from 26 universities and 34 polytechnics.
With such expansions, collaborating locally in the region is a great option for education providers, especially those who can offer the right combination of quality and cost. Australian education already has a good brand name in Asia.
Other prospective countries include China, India, Vietnam, South Korea, Malaysia, and Hong Kong. Education providers seeking local partners to implement these courses must be aware of the cultural and social contexts as well.
However, the growth of this offshore education opportunity will depend largely on the integrity of local partners and maintenance of quality. This is the right time for education providers and counselors in these countries to start looking into partnership prospects to expand their network.