Premier intervenes as international students’ English fails to make the grade

International students who speak little English are struggling to keep up with their peers at Australian universities, prompting the Victorian government to call for a review of entry requirements.

Premier Daniel Andrews has written a letter to the National Tertiary Education Union promising to take up the issue of English entry standards with the federal government.

Acting Minister for Higher Education James Merlino said the situation was unfair on international students and teachers.

“International students are a vital part of Victoria’s education system but it’s concerning that some students are enrolled in courses without adequate English language skills to complete them,” he said.

Academics, tutors and students say some international students are struggling to understand instructions in class, complete assignments and communicate with other students.

They say English standards have been set too low and can be bypassed by enrolling in bridging courses.

The National Tertiary Education Union’s Victorian president Nic Kimberley, who has tutored and lectured at many universities and works at RMIT, said many international students at Australian universities lacked the English proficiency needed to succeed.

“This is something that should concern everyone,” he said. “If they fail, they have to repeat and there is often a lot of shame. We don’t want to see international students fail.”

Mr Kimberley said he often received emails from international students begging him to increase their grade to a pass.

“It is incredibly stressful. As someone who teaches students, you do feel very guilty about it because of the high stakes.”

He said while many international students had a strong grasp of the English language, local students tried to avoid working with them for group projects.

The union is calling for a review of the English standards required for student visas and those set by universities for different courses. It’s also pushing for more English language support for international students.

Federal government rules require those wanting a student visa to achieve a score of at least 5.5 in the International English Language Testing System. This test gives students a score out of 9 for listening, reading, writing and speaking and most universities require students to receive a score of between 6 and 7.

But students can also receive a student visa with a score of 4.5 – which means they have a limited or modest grasp of English – if they enrol in a 20-week intensive English course before embarking on their university course.

While they must pass the course, they do not have to resit the international English test.

About one-quarter of all international students enter Australian universities via this pathway.

The peak body for overseas students, the Council of International Students Australia, is backing the calls for higher English entry standards.

The council’s national public relations officer, Manfred Mlestin, said while fewer international students would be accepted into courses, potentially eroding the country’s $31.9 billion a year international student industry, the quality of graduates would improve.

“If a student doesn’t understand what a teacher is saying, how can they finish their assignments?” he asks.

When John Chen* arrived in Melbourne on a student visa, he couldn’t order food in English.

“I would just use pointing, it was horrific,” he said.

The Chinese student spent 18 months at Trinity College in the hope of improving his language skills.

At university, he struggled to understand his lecturers and write essays, and barely spoke in tutorials. He switched from arts to science at the end of his first semester, hoping it would be easier.

While it wasn’t easier, he eventually improved his English by watching Youtube.

Chinese student Adam Zhao* said he failed a subject last semester because of his language difficulties.

He was working on a group assignment with three native English speakers who struggled to understand him.

While Adam has been in Australia for five years and completed two years of high school here, he still struggles with the language barrier.

His communication difficulties have affected his mental health, leaving him feeling isolated.

“I felt like I should be able to communicate, but I couldn’t,” he said.

A recent report by the Coroner considered the extreme stress experienced by some international students, highlighting the case of a 24-year-old Chinese international student who died in a fall that was later ruled to be suicide. He was believed to be suffering from depression and struggling to understand his English-language course.

Universities Australia chief executive Catriona Jackson said Australian universities set English language requirements that were comparable to other world-leading education sectors.

“Many universities have standards for particular courses that go above the minimum standards set by the student visa,” she said.

She said students who passed bridging courses had the English skills required to complete a higher education qualification and succeed.

Federal Education Minister Dan Tehan said it was the responsibility of universities to ensure that the students they enrol had the language skills to participate fully in their education.

“You can judge the quality of Australia’s sector by the number of international students that we attract,” he said.

https://amp.theage.com.au/national/victoria/premier-intervenes-as-international-students-english-fails-to-make-the-grade-20190122-p50syq.html

 

 

Student placements

Download the fact sheet:

Vocational placements provide students with the opportunity to apply the theory and skills they learned while studying in a professional workplace.

Under these arrangements students can gain the skills they need to transition successfully from study to work, while giving industry the opportunity to enrich student learning experiences and increase the number of work-ready graduates.

Vocational placements that meet the definition under the Fair Work Act 2009 (the FW Act) are lawfully unpaid. Students completing vocational placements are not considered to be employees and therefore are not entitled to the minimum wage nor other entitlements provided under the FW Act.

What is a vocational placement?

Under the FW Act, a vocational placement is lawfully unpaid if it meets all the following criteria:

  1. There must be a placement. This can be arranged by the educational or training institution, or a student may initiate the placement with an individual business directly, in line with the requirements of their course.
  2. There must be no entitlement to pay for the work the student undertakes.Where a student’s contract with the host business or organisation entitles them to receive money for the work they perform, the vocational placement will likely have turned into an employment relationship. Similarly, work arrangements covered by industrial awards or agreements are not vocational placements.
  3. The placement must be done as a requirement of an education or training course. The placement must be a required component of the course as a whole, or of an individual subject or module of the course. It doesn’t matter whether that subject is compulsory or an elective chosen by the student.
  4. The placement must be one that is approved. The institution delivering the course which provides for the placement must be authorised under an Australian, state or territory law or an administrative arrangement of the Commonwealth or a state or territory to do so. Courses offered at universities, TAFE colleges and schools (whether public or private) will all satisfy this requirement, as will bodies authorised to offer training courses under state or territory legislation.

When all of the above criteria are satisfied, hosts are not required to pay students entitlements under the FW Act. However, a host may elect to provide payment(s) at their discretion and under no obligation.

If the placement doesn’t meet all of the above criteria, it won’t be a vocational placement under the FW Act. However, this doesn’t automatically mean that the person is an employee and entitled to payment. The next step is to determine whether or not the person is in an employment relationship.

For more information on determining whether or not an employment relationship exists see our Unpaid Work Fact Sheet

Example 1

Katrina is in her 3rd year of a nursing degree. As part of her course, Katrina is required to complete a minimum of 4 weeks’ work experience with a registered hospital in her state in order to graduate. Katrina approaches her local hospital as they have a pre-existing relationship with her university and have regular student placements. The placement is authorised by her university, and Katrina understands it is a learning exercise and that she won’t be paid. As the arrangement meets the definition of a vocational placement under the FW Act, it can be unpaid.

Example 2

Jayne is in her final year of a mechanical engineering degree and has completed her formal class studies. As a requirement to graduate, Jayne has to organise professional engineering work experience at a business for 12 weeks. While Jayne has to organise the placement herself, the University has strict criteria about needing to assess an employer to ensure her vocational placement provides the relevant learning environment, and gives final sign-off on the placement. As this arrangement meets the definition of a vocational placement under the FW Act, it can be unpaid.

If the business decides to get Jayne to sign an employment contract and pay her wages for her work, it may turn the placement into an employment relationship. If an employment relationship is created, Jayne is entitled to at least the legal minimum rate of pay for the type of work she is performing.

Example 3

Mitchell is choosing his elective units for the following year’s study as part of his undergraduate degree. One of the electives is a 3 month unpaid placement organised by the university at a host business that provides a structured learning experience related to his degree. This placement counts as credit towards meeting his total course requirement. Because the elective forms part of his course, Mitchell’s placement meets the definition of a vocational placement under the FW Act. As this arrangement meets the definition of a vocational placement under the FW Act, it can be unpaid.

 

https://www.fairwork.gov.au/how-we-will-help/templates-and-guides/fact-sheets/unpaid-work/student-placements

It’s still worth it for overseas students to study in Australia, but universities could be doing more

It’s still worth it for overseas students to study in Australia, but universities could be doing more

For years, it has been predicted the increasing number of students flowing into the graduate jobs market would result in falling salaries, underemployment, and students taking on second and third degrees to get an edge in the competitive jobs marketplace.

But what of students who spend upwards of A$200,000 on obtaining a degree in Australia, New Zealand, Canada, the United States or Europe? Many students come to Australia from overseas and pay full market rates – A$100,000 is a very conservative estimate for fees alone, with costs of living on top of that – for undergraduate and postgraduate degrees.

Until now, we’ve known relatively little about how they fare when they return home and if there’s been a valuable return on their substantial investment. New research from the International Alumni Job Network (IAJN) reveals the return on investment for an international education is still positive for international students, and they’re generally also positive about the experience.

But it’s in the best interest of individual universities to actively work with businesses in home countries to help secure job prospects for graduates. Some universities currently do this, but most do not.

How many students study abroad?

According to the Institute of International Education, each year over 5 million students study abroad. Of them, more than a million go to the US. Australia is currently the third-largest destination country, but federal education minister Dan Tehan recently predicted Australia will overtake the UK in 2019.

Each year, the numbers increase in a seemingly unstoppable flow of students seeking an overseas degree as the passport to a better life. In Australia alone, the figures are breathtaking, with a 17% increase in just one year to be now valued at A$34 billion to the Australian economy.

Meanwhile media reports – and common sense – suggest the graduate employment market in some source countries is contracting, due to a number of factors. These include increasing inflows of internationally educated graduates, and improvements in higher education provision at home.

The China Daily, for example, reported last year that in 2007, 1.44 million students left China to study overseas, with 440,000 returning after graduation. In 2016, 5.45 million students left and 4.33 million returned home. Another 666,000 were set to return home in 2017 and compete for jobs with the 7.97 million freshly minted graduates from Chinese universities.

Return on investment

The IAJN survey covered alumni who originated from and returned to eight Asian regions: China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam. Respondents studied in Australia, the US, the UK, Canada, New Zealand or Europe.

The survey found, thankfully, the vast majority of students were more than satisfied with their international experience. In general, Indonesians were the most positive about their international experience (92%) and Indians the least positive (75%). Some 86% of Thai students thought international education was important, compared with 64% of Indians.

When it comes to satisfaction with return on investment, things get a little skewed. More than 70% of returned alumni were satisfied with the return on investment, with the exception of Indonesia (67%) and India (a lowly 46%).

Obviously, the reasons are far from straightforward. We hypothesise the responses are based on where students are getting their pre-enrolment information. We suspect using agents and university websites as the primary source of information may be too steeped in marketing hype and not enough in reality. By contrast, students who received their information by word of mouth from family, friends and other alumni were much more realistic in their expectations of studying abroad.

Graduate incomes

This study used US dollars to calculate the average wage of returned graduates because it’s the best benchmark.

In terms of income, the story is also mostly a positive one. While half of all returnees earned less than US$1,000 per month (A$1,411 per month or A$19,930 per year) in their first job, 33% reported earning more than US$4,001 per month (or A$67,729 per year).

Returns on investment depend very much on where students come from and how their earnings on return compare with their locally educated compatriots. For example, the average monthly wage of a Vietnamese-educated local is just US$175 a month and US$343 for Indonesians. On the other hand, locally educated graduates from Singapore and Hong Kong earn on average US$1,966 and US$1,722 per month respectively.

As expected, earnings growth accelerates over time. Some 40% of returned alumni earned more than US$10,000 per month (A$170,000 per year). Although we must take account of the fact some alumni responding to the survey gained their degrees more than two decades ago and were part of a relatively elite group who travelled overseas for study at that time.

On the downside, 30% of PhD graduates reported currently earning less than US$500 per month. One would assume this is a result of gender and age (such as for child bearing women). But within three to seven years, most graduates witness healthy salary increases, also as one would expect.

Attitudes towards Australian Go8 universities

The IAJN was also able to break down attitudes of students who attended a Group of Eight university (UWA, Monash, UNSW, ANU, the University of Melbourne, UQ, the University of Adelaide, and the University of Sydney). Responses to other individual universities were too small to be meaningful. According to the survey, there was little financial benefit from studying at a Go8 university (compared to a non-Go8 university) for a first job. The ANU provided the best returns on investment over time.

Monash and UNSW had the highest satisfaction with return on investment at 75%. Sydney alumni also downplayed the role their international education had on their subsequent career (69% satisfaction compared to 84% at ANU and Monash). The dynamics behind these sorts of statistics will be up to individual universities to analyse and understand.

But the survey found Sydney University had the highest rate (15%) of alumni earning more than US$10,000 a month in their first job. Somewhat ironically, Sydney also registered the lowest satisfaction with return on investment (62%) – perhaps a culmination of high fees and the cost of living in Sydney.

Obviously, it’s in the interests of individual universities to actively work with businesses in home countries to help secure job prospects for graduates. The power of word of mouth and social networks should not be undermined.

The value of the international education sector might have hit an all-time high, but there’s pressure on individual universities to do their best to ensure graduates get a genuine return on their massive investment in their education abroad.

 

PM eyes plan to encourage international students to study at regional unis

PM eyes plan to encourage international students to study at regional unis

The Prime Minister says moving students could ease overcrowding in major capital cities.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison is considering a plan to encourage international students to move to regional centres, which could ease population growth in Sydney and Melbourne.

“In the north, they want more population, In Adelaide they want more population.” Mr Morrison said.

“But I can tell you in the outer suburbs of Sydney and Melbourne, they don’t so it’s about how you manage population and there are plenty of levers for how you do that.”

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, there were more than 786 thousand international student enrolments in 2017, but less than four per cent of those were in regional areas.

A move to make those universities more enticing is being welcomed by regional institutions.

“[Students] interact a lot more with the people in the community here [Armidale] so they get to have a more true Australian experience,” University of New England vice-chancellor, Annabelle Duncan, told SBS News.

“The common language between all the international students and the domestic students is English so they practice their English a lot more.” Ms Duncan said.

But the body representing international students is worried they may not have the necessary facilities to make it an enticing option and the plan could have an adverse effect.

“Regional institutions might not have all the courses that the city universities would have,” president of the Council of International Students Australia, Bijay Sapkota, told.

“There could be less opportunity for work integrated learning because big corporations would be established in the city area rather than the regional area.”

Australia’s immigration intake to remain at last year’s level: PM Scott Morrison

Australia’s immigration intake to remain at last year’s level: PM Scott Morrison

Prime Minister Scott Morrison says he expects Australia’s permanent annual immigration intake to remain at year’s level “just a little over 160,000″ against the planning level of 190,000.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison says Australia’s annual immigration intake will continue to remain at last year’s level, which was nearly 28,000 less than the planning level of 190,000.

“Our current permanent immigration levels are running just a little over 160,000. That was the level of the permanent immigration that was running at the time of the conclusion of the Howard Government,” Mr Morrison told reporters.

“They used to be a bit higher than that in terms of what the permanent intake had been a few years ago and that has come down somewhat over the last year or so. And I expect it to remain at those levels,” he said responding to a question about NSW Premier Gladys Berejeklian’s call to slash the state’s overseas migration intake to John Howard-era levels.

Last year, Australia’s permanent immigration intake fell to below 163,000 – the lowest since 2007-08 under John Howard.

Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton who was responsible for the Immigration portfolio before Mr Morrison took the reins of the country from Malcolm Turnbull, attributed the decline in immigration to enhanced security checks.

Earlier this week, Immigration Minister, David Coleman indicated that his department would continue the approach adopted since last year.

“We did see last year, the impact the increased security process had,” Mr Coleman said in Melbourne.

“It is absolutely fundamental that we in no way absolutely compromise on security. We are not going to do that. We are going to be very careful.

Australia’s annual immigration planning levels have been consistent at 190,000 since 2011. The actual intake has been consistent with the planning levels since then for most of the time until 2016-17 when the intake was just over 183,000.

Last year’s figures showed a decline of over 21,000 in the number permanent visas issued compared to the previous year, primarily driven by a cut in skilled and family stream visas.

In 2017-18, the skilled stream visas saw a cut of over 12,000 and family stream visas were also cut by 15 per cent.

The continuing visa squeeze reflects in the number of invites issued by the Immigration Department to visa aspirants who have submitted their expression of interest to apply for a permanent visa.

Skilled migrants to spend ‘at least a few years’ in regional Australia under Morrison’s population plan

Skilled migrants to spend ‘at least a few years’ in regional Australia under Morrison’s population plan

New population minister Alan Tudge said up to 45 percent of permanent immigrants could be diverted to visas that force them to spend “at least a few years” in regional areas, or small states like South Australia

The Morrison government has promised visa reforms that will force a significant chunk of Australia’s annual intake of 190,000 permanent migrants to spend “at least a few years” in regional areas before they can move to a city like Sydney or Melbourne.

The move, advocated by the Nationals and key lobby groups like the Farmers’ Federation, is part of the government’s bid to tackle population growth in the country’s congested capitals while stimulating regional areas crying out for more labour.

Scott Morrison’s newly appointed “congestion-busting” minister for population and cities, Alan Tudge, announced the plan at a speech in Melbourne on Tuesday.

Existing regional visas only divert around 5,000 of the annual permanent intake, which is capped at 190,000 places.

The new scheme would be much more ambitious and could force nearly half of the migration stream to settle in regional areas and the smaller states.

Mr Tudge said the policy would not impact the 25 percent who come on employer-sponsored visas, where a specific company vouches for the migrant, or the roughly 30 percent who come on family reunion visas.

“But about 45 percent of our visas aren’t attached to a geographical location as such, and therefore there are those opportunities to provide those incentives and encouragements to reside elsewhere,” Mr Tudge said.

The visas would require migrants to live outside the major cities for “at least a few years”, he said, using a “combination of encouragement and some conditions”.

The government’s proposal relates to skilled visas, but Mr Tudge said there was an ongoing discussion about moving more of the humanitarian refugee intake to rural areas as well.

Enforcement questioned
The minister would not specify what punishments might apply to migrants who breach their conditions, or how long the conditions would be imposed.

“Nearly every visa has some conditions attached to it,” he said, flagging more detail in the coming “months”.

Migrants to be forced into regional Australia under federal government population plan

Migrants to be forced into regional Australia under federal government population plan

The Morrison Government has revisited a well-worn plan to force migrants to regional and rural centres to help ease congestion in capital cities as population growth outstrips infrastructure building.

Cities and Population Minister Alan Tudge revived the idea in his first major speech as Cities and Population Minister, revealing congestion cost $25 billion in 2017-18, and will rise to $40 billion a year by 2030.

But it’s also a policy that Scott Morrison dismissed out of hand in opposition.

“To hold out some false hope that this problem’s going to be solved because a Population Minister is going to fantastically move people around like has been done before in our history, is I think unfair to the Australian people to suggest that that is a realistic option, certainly in the short, or medium term,” Mr Morrison said in 2010.

“The government can talk to the cows come home about getting people into the regions and we would pursue policies similar to that but we cannot be unrealistic and disingenuous with the Australian people by suggesting that is a substitute for easing the population pressure on those in western Sydney and other parts of the country.

“It is just simply not telling the truth.”

Mr Morrison later tried to clarify those criticisms, saying what Labor proposed isn’t being contemplated by his government.

“The migration program is one thing,” he said.

“What I was referring to is migration in isolation being the solution to this issue. It is not.

“Migration is part of a suite of policies that deal with congestion in our cities.”

Still, Mr Tudge told the Menzies Institute travel in peak times in Sydney takes 65 percent longer than off-peak, and 55 percent, in Melbourne.

Australia’s population grew 3.75 million, nearly twice the previous decade, adding a city the size of Canberra every year.

The main factor, in Sydney and Melbourne, is net overseas migration, that accounted for 60 percent of national population growth over the last 10 years.

Temporary migration increased rapidly as well, rising about 70,000 a year.

“There are benefits of a larger, more diverse population,” Mr Tudge said.

A larger population means a stronger economy. With this comes greater opportunities for Australians.

“However, there are also challenges. The greatest challenge is the pressure it puts on our big cities in the form of congestion. In Sydney and Melbourne, and south-east Queensland.

“This is exacerbated by the fact that 75 percent of the population growth has been to our three largest population areas.”

According to statistics, 87 percent of all skilled migrants are going to Sydney and Melbourne, along with almost all the humanitarian intake.

Sending migrants to regional areas, and less populated states, is part of a four-part strategy being considered.

Those coming to Australia on family reunions visas wouldn’t be affected.

The government hasn’t yet decided where the migrants might be sent, or under what conditions.

“There are regional areas that simply cannot get people to do the work available.,” the minister said.

“Matching skills of new migrants with the skill shortages in rural and regional Australia will be the key to the success of this approach.”

Mr Tudge said a massive infrastructure program would also ease the squeeze in the major cities, after years of playing “catch up”, along with a high-speed rail network, and economic incentives for regional Australia.

While Labor once supported the policy, frontbencher Brendan O’Connor dismissed it as a “thought bubble” by a “thought bubble boy” prime minister, saying regional sponsored migration scheme processing times had blown out under the Liberals.

Mr O’Connor called for labour market testing, promising an independent body to look at where labour shortages might exist.

A pair of shoes costs Indian migrant Australian citizenship

A pair of shoes costs Indian migrant Australian citizenship

An Indian national has been refused Australian citizenship for not disclosing his court conviction over a stolen pair of shoes and possessing a credit card that was suspected to be stolen.
An Indian national has been denied Australian citizenship after the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) found he deliberately hid information about his court conviction over a pair of shoes more than eight years ago.

35-year-old Mr Patel* did not disclose his court conviction in his March 2010 permanent residency application and subsequently in his citizenship application in July 2016.

While Mr Patel was granted a permanent visa in 2015, the Immigration Department discovered his February 2010 conviction by a Sydney court on charges of Larceny and goods in personal custody suspected being stolen and refused his citizenship application on character grounds.

According to the police record produced in the AAT, Mr Patel – then an international student – took a pair of shoes from a store without paying on 11th January 2010, and was stopped near the gates of the shopping centre while “walking very fast, almost running”.

Police also found a credit card in his possession that they suspected was stolen. While Mr Patel pleaded guilty to both the charges and he paid the fine, he insisted during the AAT hearing that his offending was not premeditated and that the credit card found on him belonged to his friend who had given it to him for safekeeping.

Inadvertent mistakes:

He told the AAT that he was “very sorry and embarrassed” for not disclosing his conviction in his citizenship application, saying since the offence had taken place six years before his filling out the citizenship application, it didn’t readily come to his mind.

He also attributed it to English being his second language and not realising that he wouldn’t get an opportunity to fix any mistakes in the application later.

“My situation was one of not paying sufficient concentrated attention to what I was doing and not attending to the exact wording of everything I had to read,” he told the AAT.

However, the AAT said Mr Patel had disclosed his conviction while registering his business just two months before filling out his citizenship application and discussed this with his business partner.

Explaining the error in his permanent residency application, he told the Tribunal that a migration agent had filled out his visa application and he may have answered ‘no’ to the character question. This was just a month after his court conviction. But he couldn’t produce any evidence of hiring a migration agent to act on his behalf.

The Tribunal heard that he attached a pre-dated police clearance statement which contained no offences, which it said it was “plainly dishonest”.

A deliberate pattern of dishonesty’:

Mr Patel said he has had an “unblemished” life before and after his “inadvertent” offending that he said was “by mistake and totally out of character”.

“I was daydreaming when I was in the shoe store as I was going overseas to India in a couple of days and the thought in my mind was to buy a pair of shoes for my nephew.”

He said he “unwittingly” stepped out of the store with shoes-priced “less than $20” in his hand while making a phone call to his nephew to know his shoe size.

Mr Patel told the Tribunal he was also under pressure to complete his assignments before going to India and that contributed to the confusion in communication with the store employee.

He also told the AAT that the credit card police found on him belonged to his friend who was travelling to India. He said he was not allowed to access his phone to see his friend’s phone number and that he couldn’t give an address for his friend as he had left his previous accommodation and would move to a new place on returning to Australia.

However, the AAT found his explanation was at variance with the police records.

AAT Member C Edwardes said in a written judgment delivered last month that Mr Patel’s non-disclosure of his convictions was a deliberate “pattern of dishonesty”.

“The Tribunal finds that [Mr Patel] changes his storyline often. This is particularly in relation to the circumstances which led to his convictions,” Member Edwardes said adding that his untrue explanations were reflective of “a pattern of dishonest behaviour”.

*Only his last name.

One Nation’s Malcolm Roberts wants migration more than halved

One Nation’s Malcolm Roberts wants migration more than halved

One Nation’s lead Senate candidate Malcolm Roberts believes Australia’s migrant intake should be radically slashed to just 70,000 per year.

The current migration program’s target figure was technically 190,000, although there were only 162,000 permanent visas approved in the 12 months ended June 30.

“I have done the research in detail but that’s what we’re going with, but I’m not making this a party issue and there are others who say – around 70,000, which is a zero net,” he told the LibertyFest conference in Brisbane on Saturday.

Tasked with debating “Immigration, how to draw the line”, Mr Roberts said he wanted immigration, not “colonisation”.

Mr Roberts – who was born in India to a Welsh father and Australian mother – said he was “not an immigrant”.

He then immediately followed that statement with: “Although I am an immigrant because the Australian citizenship standards have changed so much in the last 140 years.”

“So I share with you [the other speaker on stage, Satya Marar] some immigrant status in that I was born overseas but my mother was Australian, but I had to become an Australian at the age of 19, so it’s somewhat confusing,” Mr Roberts said.

Last year, the High Court found Mr Roberts was a citizen of the United Kingdom by descent at the time of his nomination.

He was forced out of Parliament due to section 44 of the constitution which effectively excludes dual citizens from being federal politicians.

Mr Roberts said the government should be “fixed” before anything else.

“Don’t fiddle with immigration until that’s fixed, fix up government, get back to our constitution and then start wondering about some of the other issues because the key to western civilisation, the key to society is freedom, and the key to our society is at stake right now,” he said.

However, Mr Roberts said immigration was about “who we sit down next to on the train, who we can sit down next to on an aeroplane”.

“We have to decide who comes in here, that’s our government, we use values-based immigration, so it’s not about just economics, because the hip pocket is appealed to by many governments,” he said.

In her maiden 1996 speech, One Nation leader Senator Pauline Hanson argued most Australians wanted the country’s immigration policy to be radically reviewed as the nation was in danger of being “swamped by Asians”.

She updated her rhetoric to “swamped by Muslims” during her first speech in 2016.

Mr Roberts also said taxation had become a monster which was destroying Australia.

“It is the most destructive system in this country,” he said.

Mr Roberts will vie to return to the Senate at the next federal election.

The two-day LibertyFest conference hosted an eclectic group of speakers and attendees, including LNP senators, a sex therapist, Queensland’s chief entrepreneur, free speech advocates and members of right-wing think tanks.

New pathway for permanent residency rolled out for international students

New pathway for permanent residency rolled out for international students

International students will need a full-time job offer and ‘proficient English’ to be eligible under this graduate stream.

Western Australia has rolled out a new pathway to permanent residency for international students.

The new Graduate Occupation List (GOL) was released on Monday.

International students who have studied at least two years in Western Australia at a Western Australian University, have an available occupation on the new Graduate occupation list, have a full-time job offer for more than twelve months and can prove ‘proficient English’ will be eligible under the state government’s graduate stream.

This new graduate stream is available for Western Australian State nomination, namely the Skilled Nominated visa (Subclass 190); or the Skilled Regional (Provisional) visa (Subclass 489).

“Not all international students have access to all occupations”
While Masters and PhD graduates will have access to all occupations on the Graduate occupation list, Bachelor and higher degree graduates will only be able to access some of the occupations on the Graduate occupation list.

The university qualification in Western Australia does not need to determine the occupation one wishes to nominate from the Graduate occupation list for State nomination, the announcement says.

“International students must meet English requirements”
All applicants applying through the graduate stream must demonstrate a ‘Proficient’ level of English unless holding a passport from the United Kingdom, the Republic of Ireland, the United States, Canada and New Zealand.

“Work experience requirements waived for Masters and PhD degree holders”
Under the graduate stream, the work experience requirement is waived for students who hold a Western Australian PhD or Masters Degree.

However Bachelor and other higher degree graduates will need to give evidence of work experience, which could either be at least one year of Australian work experience in the nominated (or closely related) occupation over the last 10 years or at least three years of overseas work experience in the nominated (or closely related) occupation over the last 10 years.

“Provide a contract of employment”
All applicants must have a contract of employment for full-time employment for at least 12 months in Western Australia in the nominated (or closely related ) occupation.

Students intending to apply for a Subclass 489 visa must provide a contract of employment located in a regional area of Western Australia.

“Demonstrate sufficient funds”
International students will need to demonstrate sufficient funds to settle depending on how many family members are intending to migrate, with a minimum of AUD 20,000 for a single person.

Check the Graduate Occupation List below:
https://www.sbs.com.au/yourlanguage/hindi/en/article/2018/09/27/new-pathway-permanent-residency-rolled-out-international-students