INTERNATIONAL students, new and old, gathered at Victoria University Convention Centre on Sunday, April 17 for important information on housing, career, safety, student services, cultures, and permanent residency.
Organised by the Australian Federation of International Students (AFIS) and the Victorian State Government, the talks were delivered by speakers from Consumer Affairs Victoria, Victoria Police, the Metropolitan Fire Brigade, and the Department of Immigration and Citizenship.
To keep things interesting, performances were interspersed between sessions, including a captivating bush dance as well as an African drums and dance number.
Victoria’s International Student Information Day 2011 project manager Douglas Tsoi said the event was about raising awareness on different issues.
“If we arm the students with accurate and timely information and the contact points for the different issues, as soon as something comes out, they would know who to contact. An example is an issue concerning rental rights,” Mr Tsoi said.
“It is important to have the accurate and timely information rather than doing your research when something comes up. Come to events like this, go to your orientation events. Hence, when something comes up, you know what to do.”
Students found the information day extremely beneficial.
Bartholomew Bill, from Papua New Guinea said he found the sessions on accommodation rental rights and responsibilities as well as safety for international students most useful.
The student who is studying Diploma in Aircraft Maintenance Engineering at Kangan Institute said the event was also an opportunity for him to meet other students.
Diana Lam, a first-year commerce student from Macau studying at Melbourne University said she picked up some useful tips on job-hunting.
“Before, I didn’t know how to apply for a job. Now, I get a clearer idea about that,” Ms Lam said.
“Also, I wish I had come to the event earlier (last year) because I went through a lot of problems on renting and bonds. But it’s now settled.”
For more information on other programs and events organised by AFIS, visit internationalstudents.org.au.