27 April 2023

Thursday 27 April 2023

Media Release – ATN Universities – Australia’s migration reform and international students 

The Australian Technology Network of Universities (ATN) believes Australia will benefit from the migration system reset outlined in the Parkinson review.

ATN has advocated for a migration system which fulfils the country’s skills needs, strongly articulates the role of international education within the migration system and one which is easy to navigate.

ATN Executive Director, Luke Sheehy said ATN stands ready to contribute during the additional consultations with universities, to ensure proposed changes deliver enhancements to the system.

“We want to give more people the opportunity to make Australia their home, so it is crucial that Government continue to work closely with universities and industry to ensure we achieve the appropriate balance between the needs of workers and the needs of industry,” said Mr Sheehy.

An example of this cooperation is the commitment shared by the Australian Government and the Tech Council of Australia to achieve 1.2 million tech jobs in Australia by 2030. While reskilling and upskilling is forecast to be the largest source of new tech workers, skilled migration is a crucial part of reaching that jobs goal and universities will be a vital connection point in this pipeline.

“The review has rightly acknowledged the important role of international education in supplementing our skilled workforce – an aspect we have taken for granted for far too long without providing proper pathways to permanent residency,” Mr Sheehy added.

Mr Sheehy also commended the review for highlighting the often-difficult transition into skilled employment for international graduates.

“All university students should benefit from work-integrated learning during their studies, such as internships and placements – that will enhance the experience for international students and better prepare them for meaningful work in Australia,” he said.

Utilising Jobs and Skills Australia will help fulfill the ambition of the government to provide a more evidence-based approach to skilled migration as well as more appropriately articulating the role of international education in Australia’s migration system.

The reworking of the Genuine Temporary Entrant (GTE) is also strongly endorsed by the ATN. Resetting the framework to focus on genuine students, regardless of whether they hope to stay or return home, will provide much-needed clarity and a system which will be much easier to navigate.

Media Contact (not for publication)
Frank Coletta (Manager, Media and Communications) m: 0468 987 295 e: frank.coletta@atn.edu.au