Starting July 2024, about 100 Indian students would be studying postgraduate courses at an Australian university campus in India. Deakin University has become the first to announce opening of the International Branch Campus (IBC) in GIFT City of Gujarat. Prof Iain Martin, vice-chancellor, Deakin University, told FE’s Vikram Chaudhary that courses will be delivered alongside industry partners TCS, Infosys, HSBC, HCL and Xebia. “Our aim is to open up global jobs for Indian students,” he said. Excerpts:
What will Deakin IBC initially teach?
We will focus only on postgraduate studies, and the first two programmes are Master of Cybersecurity and Master of Business Analytics. Both are two years in duration, both will have about 50 students each, and first year’s study will be made up of eight core units. In second year, students will focus on taking up a cadetship, working directly with industry partners on agreed projects.
Why is the focus only on postgraduate studies?
The aim is to make students job-ready and get them high-end jobs immediately after studies. About 200 companies are present in GIFT City and they need experts with cybersecurity and business analytics skills.
Can foreign students also enrol at Deakin IBC?
To start with, it will be only Indian students, and later on maybe students from South Asian nations. There will definitely be student exchange between Australian campuses and IBC.
Will IBC impact the number of Indian students going to Deakin Australia to study?
No. Students who want to go to Australia to study have a different mindset as compared to those who would like to study in India. We have more than 5,300 students from India. IBC will have just 100, to begin with.
Students go to Deakin not just for Deakin, but also for Australia…
Yes, but it’s also a fact that there are students who want a Deakin degree but cannot leave their country. We got the campus to them.
Who will be the teachers?
We will mostly have Indian staff, but about 20% of teaching will be delivered by Australia-based staff. We have built into our model the opportunity for all Indian staff to come and visit Australia once every 18 months or so.
Will IBC take part in rankings?
We don’t want to separate IBC from Australian campuses, and so it won’t take part in separate rankings. There will clearly be Indian flavour on this campus, but it’s a part of Deakin Australia.