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Two 2023 New Colombo Plan scholarships for Southern Cross students


Content team
19 December 2022
Southern Cross undergraduates Pearl Andrews and Yasmeen Daniels at the NCP Awards Ceremony in Canberra
2023 NCP scholarship recipients Pearl Andrews and Yasmeen Daniels at the NCP Awards Ceremony in Canberra

Pearl Andrews and Yasmeen Daniels, both Southern Cross undergraduates, have been awarded a New Colombo Plan (NCP) scholarship for 2023. This prestigious grant, initiative of the Australian Government, will allow Yasmeen and Pearl to study and undertake internships in the Indo-Pacific region for up to one year.

Pearl, a Bachelor of Indigenous Knowledge student majoring in Law and Justice, is considering internship options within the University of the South Pacific, located in Fiji. She chose Fiji as her primary location to advance her goals of understanding how Indigenous (and Pacific Islander) methodologies of combating climate change can inform Western law frameworks that address environmental challenges.

Yasmeen, who is studying a Bachelor of Science (Environmental Systems and Marine Systems), is planning to undertake an internship in South Korea, as she would like to be able to experience a completely different ecosystem in a temperate climate. She is also interested in the Korean culture and has started to learn the language.  

By supporting Australian undergraduates to study and undertake internships in the Indo-Pacific region, the NCP aims to lift knowledge of this part of the world in Australia.

It encourages a two-way flow of students between Australia and the rest of our region, complementing the thousands of students from the Indo-Pacific coming to Australia to study each year.

In addition to the scholarship program, the New Colombo Plan involves a flexible mobility grants package for both short and longer-term study, internships, mentorships, practicums and research.

The 2023 round of NCP scholarships will see the largest cohort of undergraduates (150) travel to the Indo-Pacific since the initiative began in 2014. The 2023 scholars come from a diverse range of backgrounds and fields of study, from health and engineering to science and social work. 

Seven First Nations NCP scholars are among the 2023 cohort – the second largest number of First Nations undergraduates since the initiative’s inception. This year’s edition also welcomes the largest number of students from regional and remote areas (60) and scholars with disability (21).  

For the 150 scholars set to live, study and intern across 24 host locations next year, the journey begun at an Awards Ceremony held in Canberra in late 2022.

A NCP scholarship in Japan: a dream come true for Kama

Southern Cross undergraduate Kamadeva Ellis is currently studying at Aoyama Gakuin University, in Tokyo, thanks to a NCP scholarship. 

Originally from Lismore, in the Northern Rivers of NSW, Kama enrolled at Southern Cross to study a Bachelor of Forest Science and Management. 

“Before this scholarship in Japan, I had the opportunity to travel to Vietnam through the NCP Mobility Program. That trip made me realise how much there is out there, outside of Australia and outside of the Western culture. During the trip, I had the feeling that I was not making the most of the whole experience since I was not able to speak the local language, so I decided to learn a second language. Given I had always been interested in Japan, its pop culture, I decided to learn Japanese.”

After his trip to Vietnam, Kama engaged with Southern Cross University’s Japan-Australia Centre and just by coincidence he found out about the possibility to go on exchange. “I went to the Centre because of my Japanese course and someone there assumed I was at the Centre to discuss the exchange. Hence, I decided to chase that possibility which became true with the NCP scholarship.”

Kama has been in Japan since September and he is loving every aspect of his life there. He has some big plans ahead and he’s determined to make the most of this unique opportunity. 


Media contact: Southern Cross University media and content team, [email protected]