Information for Students
You can apply for the Welcome to Melbourne program if you are an Australia Awards scholar and have commenced your studies in the current semester. You will receive further details about the program, including the application form, from the Australia Awards team during your Introductory Academic Program (IAP).
You will be matched with a member of our alumni community or staff member. They will aim to make you feel welcome, introduce you to Melbourne and help you create local connections. In exchange, your host will learn something about you, your home country and your culture.
"Talk to your hosts, ask them as many questions, (and) be sure that this is a reciprocal relationship. They have the same curiosity as you; they want to know about your culture as much as you want to know about the Aussie way of life."
– Ignacio Pareja Amador, Welcome to Melbourne Student
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Alumni Relations Office
+61 3 8344 1746
⇩ When will I meet my host and how often will we meet?
You will meet your host at the launch event held at the beginning of the semester. After you meet you can both decide whether you’d like to meet again, how often and where. There is no obligation for you to meet more than once after the launch event.
⇩ How is my host selected?
We try to match hosts and students by looking at the interests you have indicated on your registration forms. However, as this is a cultural exchange, we encourage you to explore cultural differences as well as what you might have in common.
⇩ Can my family join the program as well?
Yes. Your family is more than welcome to participate in the program. Where possible we try to match you and your family with a host who also has a family, so please make sure you tell us about your family on your application form.
⇩ Now that I have submitted my registration, what happens next?
The Alumni Relations office will carefully match you with a suitable host. You will then be introduced via email prior to the launch event. It is important that you let your host know if you are unable to attend the launch event, so that you can arrange an alternative meeting.
⇩ What can I do with my host?
Both host and student should come along with a few ideas on where you might like to go. It might be sharing a meal at the host’s home, going to a park for a picnic or sporting event, visiting an art gallery, museum etc. It is up to you and your host to decide together.
⇩ Will program give me enough time for my studies?
Yes. Your studies remain your priority and this program will not interfere with your studies. Activities should be undertaken when you have the time aside from your studies. Speaking openly with your host about this is very important.
⇩ What if I need to study or work, is it impolite to say that I’m too busy to meet?
No. It is not impolite to let your host know that you don’t have time to meet with them. However, as a courtesy you should let them know as early as possible, particularly if your host has already made arrangements (e.g. a special meal for you, organised to attend a play or a concert, etc).
⇩ Is there an opportunity for all participants to meet as a group?
There are no formal group activities organised after the launch event, but if you and your host would like to start a group activity you may exchange contact details with other people at the launch event.
⇩ The activity my host and I are doing requires payment. Will my host pay for me to attend?