A NEW DVD gives prospective international students the chance to check out Australia without leaving their home country.
Aimed at immigrants and international students, the videos, created by UK-born Tessa Steven, provide a wealth of information on living, studying and working in Australia.
In each DVD, Ms Steven interviews experts including doctors, lawyers, financial advisors, real estate agents and teachers, and speaks to migrants who have already assimilated into the Australian lifestyle.
Ms Steven said Australia’s immigration department issued 300,000 visas each year, with the education sector representing the country’s third largest export, bringing in 340,000 students every year.
It was Ms Steven’s own “difficult, long and complicated” move to Australia that sparked the idea for the DVD series.
“After arriving in Australia and getting used to my surrounds, I started to see what an incredible lifestyle and spectacular facilities can be enjoyed here and thought, wouldn’t it have been great to have seen all this before I arrived?” she said.
And so armed with a handycam and a stack of entrepreneurial enthusiasm, Ms Steven ventured out with her two young children in tow, to film footage of her hometown, the Sunshine Coast.
Uploading an unscripted DVD on eBay, she was astonished to sell two copies the very first night.
“The success of those first, rough attempts at sharing my newfound home with others really took me by surprise,” Ms Steven said.
“Before I knew it, I had four different DVD’s completed and the Living Down Under concept was born.”
Ms Stevens said she received “fantastic feedback” from people overseas who felt the DVD series had eliminated the need for them to go to the expense of flying to Australia first to check the country out.
Each DVD in the Living Down Under series features one Australian state, while the separate Study in Australia DVDs focuses on educational life in each state.
“My Study in Australia DVD shows real life footage of students and the various educational facilities from high school to university and provides information on everything from the Australian education system, lifestyle and facilities available to what it is like to homestay with an Australian family,’‘ she said.
“I believe the Living Down Under series can play a huge role in helping to boost the Australian economy by promoting Australia’s exceptional facilities and way of life to these audiences.”
Purchase the DVDs or watch free previews at www.livingdownunder.net.