Brisbane rolls out International Internship Program to spur economic and professional growth

By Our Reporter
Representational Photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash

Brisbane City Council has taken a leap forward in fostering both domestic and international talent by launching its 2024 International Internship Program. Aimed at businesses with global aspirations and students yearning for invaluable experience, the initiative promises to fortify the city’s burgeoning economy while providing a launchpad for young professionals.

Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner extolled the merits of the program, highlighting Brisbane’s stature as Australia’s most business-friendly city. “This is a fantastic opportunity for students and businesses alike,” said Cr Schrinner. The program is envisioned as a conduit for students—both local and international—to gain industry experience and build their professional portfolios. Simultaneously, Brisbane-based businesses stand to gain from the arrangement through a 50% subsidy on internship wages by the Council.

The initiative serves a dual purpose. For students, especially those with multicultural backgrounds and those hailing from Brisbane’s sister cities, it opens the doors to a paid four-week placement. For business owners, the program offers the chance to expand their reach in international markets by collaborating with these high-calibre interns.

Applications are not limited to any particular sector. Student applicants from a wide range of disciplines including aviation, digital and technology, health and aged care, media, professional services, tourism and hospitality, and trade and investment development can apply. These students will be thoughtfully matched with host businesses according to the compatibility of skills and requirements.

Stephen Love, Managing Director of Outsource Institute, a former host business, spoke about the transformative effect of their participation. “Our intern, Aisyah, brought her expertise in supporting diverse learners to provide disability and inclusivity training to our international engineering students and staff,” he said. Aisyah Ardani, the successful intern from Semarang, Indonesia, reiterated the program’s benefit, stating that it provided her an authentic working environment and opportunities to network while earning a wage.

As Brisbane’s profile continues to soar both nationally and internationally, such initiatives become increasingly important. With the Council underwriting a part of the financial burden, it eases the way for small and medium-sized businesses to tap into a rich vein of emerging talent. This talent, in turn, gets to immerse itself in the Australian work culture, adding a new dimension to their skill set.

From local businesses eyeing global markets to international students seeking a substantive Australian experience, the program aims to be a win-win for all involved. In an era marked by rapid globalisation and heightened competition, fostering such symbiotic relationships can only be viewed as a positive step.

Interested businesses and students can express their interest by visiting the Brisbane City Council website and searching for ‘International Internship Program’. The applications for host businesses will remain open until 8 January 2024, while the deadline for student applications is set for 15 January 2024. The internships will take place from 1-26 April 2024.

In a nutshell, Brisbane City Council’s International Internship Program serves as a catalytic experience for both businesses and students, setting the stage for increased economic activity and individual professional development. It’s an initiative that underscores Brisbane’s commitment to fostering a balanced and robust economy, and one that other cities may well look to as a model for future development.

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