Deakin leads first Indian government-university-industry partnership

Media release

05 October 2022

Deakin University and the Indian Government's Ministry of Education and Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship have come together to announce a first-of-its-kind government-university-industry partnership.

The partnership will offer scholarships, fellowships, skilling, and training programs to strengthen the India-Australia relationship and lead the way forward for innovative knowledge sharing and student exchanges between the two countries.

Deakin Vice-Chancellor Professor Iain Martin said he was pleased to announce the partnership on the 75th anniversary of India's independence.

"This innovative partnership with the Ministry of Education and Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, Government of India, will bolster the government-university-industry linkages and give back to our Indian partners and the wider Indian community," Professor Martin said.

"This partnership is Deakin's commitment to India's pursuit of excellence in education and will enrich the communities in both India and Australia with unique perspectives and experiences that expand the horizons of students and make them more competitive in the global economy."

Four key initiatives have been announced as a part of this unique partnership:

  1. Scholarships: Deakin University Vice-Chancellor's Meritorious Scholarships will be offered to ten meritorious Indian students for studying onshore in Australia at one of Deakin's campuses in 2023. These prestigious scholarships, which cover 100 per cent of the students' course fees are a part of Deakin's 'Changing Lives' initiative. The initiative aims to support deserving students with an outstanding academic history and all-round achievements, with a view to give back to India the skills and experience they gain during their study.
  2. Research fellowships: Among the top 1 per cent of universities for global impact, Deakin will provide research fellowships to cover course fees for 20 high-achieving Indian students for the duration of their higher degree research studies. These research scholarships will provide passionate students with an opportunity to study with Deakin's vibrant research community in Australia and pursue meaningful research that can provide solutions to global challenges.
  3. Skilling and training: 20 staff members from the Indian Government's Ministry of Education and Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship will travel to Deakin for skilling and training programs in 2023.
  4. Leadership development program: Vice-Chancellors from 20 'Institutes of Eminence' in India will travel to Deakin next year for a leadership development and training program that will focus on developing global university skills to harness the potential of the youth of India.

Professor Martin said the number of young people (aged 15 to 25) in India was ten times the total number of people in Australia, so digital technology and digital capabilities would be vital in helping India deliver on an aspirational National Education Policy.

India's Minister of Education, Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, Shri Dharmendra Pradhan, said that after India's National Education Policy 2020 was released, prestigious universities around the world were looking to collaborate with India.

"The youth of India care about becoming employable graduates and we are in talks to develop the infrastructure that will make globally relevant skills accessible to Indian youth," he said.

"India and Australia have a strong relationship in the key sector of education. Prime Minister Narendra Modi met Prime Minister Anthony Albanese in the recent Quad meeting, and I have also been on a tour to Australia recently where I visited Deakin and met the team.

"The crux of this partnership is bringing together the strengths of both nations to provide education and employment opportunities to Indian students."

Ravneet Pawha, Deakin's Vice-President of Global Alliances and CEO of South Asia, said Deakin was the first international education provider to set up an office in India, which spoke volumes about the university's commitment to the nation.

"We have always had an 'in India, with India, for India' approach to engagement in the region and this partnership will add new energy to our efforts to deepen the bilateral relationship through enhanced engagement in education and employability, research and innovation, skilling and training," Ms Pawha said.

"We are grateful to Minister Pradhan for giving us this opportunity and we look forward to a meaningful partnership."

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