Monday, 22 April 2024

South Australian Education Summit, StudyAdelaide, Jinan, China

It’s a great pleasure to be back in Jinan.

As Jane mentioned, I have a deep connection with China built over many years and including having been Australia’s Ambassador to China.

It is wonderful now to return as Governor of South Australia to support the linkages and long-lasting people-to-people connections formed between South Australia and our sister province of Shandong over so many years.

Education has historically played a vital role in building Australia’s connection to our regional neighbours.

Young people come to Australia to study; they make friends; they return to their countries; they become successful leaders, and businesspeople; but they retain and build on the friendships and connections they made as students.

So it is with China, and so it is with Shandong.

For this reason, I am proud to be supporting the initiatives of the South Australian government and South Australia’s world-class education system.

South Australia has a vibrant international education sector, with international students from over 130 nationalities studying in Adelaide.

Adelaide is a successful multicultural city that values the diversity that students from Jinan bring to our city, to our classrooms, and to our workplaces.

And students in turn, benefit from the education and experience that only Adelaide can offer.

South Australia’s education landscape is undergoing an exciting process of transformation.

A new university - Adelaide University is being formed by combining the University of South Australia and the University of Adelaide.

This new University will be a member of the Group of Eight.

It will start teaching in 2026 and aspires to be ranked in the top 1% of universities worldwide.

The curriculum will be contemporary and informed by industry.

Work-integrated learning will be embedded in in its courses.

In research, it will become known for its leadership across disciplines including science and technology, health, humanities and business.

Another of our universities, Flinders University, opened a new city campus in January this year.

Set over eight levels in a new high-rise building, right in the middle of the city, the collaborative, state-of-the-art learning areas and open-plan event spaces deliver an optimal learning experience.

More broadly, South Australia’s economy is also in a process of transformation, gaining momentum in industries such as health, renewable energy, space, agriculture, and critical technologies.

Chinese students will benefit from the growth we are cultivating in these globally relevant and future-facing industries, many of which align with growing industries in China.

In Adelaide, we aim to bring a student closer to career success by close links with these industries.

We achieve this through the access we provide to industry leaders, and through our innovation precincts at Lot Fourteen, Tonsley Innovation District and Adelaide BioMed City – home to multinational companies, all located minutes from the campuses of our universities.

This proximity is more than just a convenience – it enables students to gain experience and exposure to global companies during their studies, including through work placements.

Of course, education is not only about study. It is about life experience.

In South Australia, we are proud too of the support and quality of life we provide to international students who choose to study in our city.

In addition to students graduating with globally recognised qualifications and valuable industry experience, they are also supported to create friendships and networks with their peers.

This includes the experiences they receive in the classroom, as well as the opportunities provided by StudyAdelaide which hosts over 100 events for international students in Adelaide annually.

As patron of StudyAdelaide, I observe firsthand the genuine commitment from the South Australian government and community to support Chinese students during their time living and learning in Adelaide.


I can confidently say that the South Australian international education sector is exceptional. The level of passion, care and authenticity is as strong as the quality of our educational offering.

Thank you for your attendance, your dedication, and your support in sharing the opportunities Adelaide offers for students in Jinan as these talented individuals consider the next stage of their education.

We look forward to welcoming them to Adelaide and to continuing to build on our strong and enduring linkages between South Australia and China.

Coming events