In the lead-up to the Rio Olympics, the F1 visa program for students from countries such as Australia, New Zealand and India has been touted as an attractive option for those who wish to study in the world’s biggest sporting city.
But a new study from the Australian Bureau of Statistics has revealed that it may not be the best option for the country’s aspiring young athletes.
The ABS study found that just 4.4% of the 1,004 students enrolled at Australian universities were eligible for an F1 Visa in the lead up to the Games, compared to 16.9% in 2015.
The figures have been compiled by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT), which has been running a pilot program for foreign students studying in Australia.
A spokesperson for the department said the pilot program is still in its early stages, but the study highlights some important points.
“The Australian visa system is the best in the developed world and offers the highest level of protection for the interests of Australian citizens,” the spokesperson said.
“There are no specific barriers to entry for students, and students can apply online and receive their visa in one of five different ways.”
The spokesperson said students would not be required to attend any additional fees.
“In some cases, students may be required in order to access some or all of the visa-related benefits, such as the Australian citizenship and residency requirements, such that some students may not qualify for the visa.”
Students who do not complete their degree will not need to go on to enrol in courses or undertake additional learning or study.
“Australian citizens can apply for a work or study permit, which allows them to study while they study at a school in Australia.”
According to the Department, there were just over 5,000 Australian students studying at Australian university during the leadup to Rio, while there were almost 16,000 overseas students.
“This has a significant impact on the economic performance of the nation and is also an opportunity to ensure that the economy is competitive in the future,” the Department said.
The Australian government is also offering a number of visa waivers to foreign students, but there is no data available to show whether or not the program has had an impact on F1 students’ attendance at university.
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Topics:education,federal-government,world-politics,finance,government-and-politics-and.government-office,australiaFirst posted September 18, 2019 14:55:32Contact me