Every year, dozens of VU students embark on overseas study tours to make positive, lasting contributions to developing countries.

From supporting frontline medical personnel in Vanuatu to training athletes with disabilities in Bali, VU’s student mobility programs underpin the University’s mission to transform the lives of people and communities all over the world.

Capacity-building in the Asia-Pacific

VU is a university with a heart. Committed to providing exceptional opportunities to any student from any background and uplifting the communities in which we operate, VU is dedicated to making meaningful impacts on a global scale.

Our international development efforts are especially focused in the Asia-Pacific region, where we support VU students from a range of disciplines to undertake activities that serve a moral purpose, including work to promote health and wellbeing, quality education, sustainable industries and liveable cities, and economic growth.

Paramedicine student on study tour

New Colombo Plan

The New Colombo Plan (NCP) is an Australian Government initiative that provides Australian undergraduate students with funding to live, work and study in the Indo-Pacific region.

Since 2014, VU has attracted more than $2.9 million in NCP funding to support more than 900 students across 50-plus projects in countries including Japan, Indonesia, India, Malaysia, Singapore, Philippines, Timor Leste, China, Thailand and Vanuatu.

In 2017, VU student Mia Dunphy also became the University’s first recipient of the NCP Scholarship, a separate NCP grant scheme which enabled her to study in Indonesia at the University of Gajah Mada (UGM) and work as an intern at UGM’s Center for the Asia and Pacific and an environmental women’s group in Fiji. Since then, three more VU students have received the prestigious scholarship.

Study tours

We recognise the importance of providing students with international study opportunities. The benefits of this are twofold: enabling students to achieve a valuable global experience while making meaningful impacts on the individuals, communities and regions in which they serve. Here are some examples of the global study opportunities available to our students.


Law & Justice Study Tour

Since 2018, more than 20 VU students have participated in an annual study tour to gain a better understanding of the Indian justice system, including its caste system and death penalty. In 2020, the students were fortunate to meet the Commissioner of Police of Bhubaneswar and Cuttack, a jurisdiction of five million Indians.

Nutrition Program

A total of eight students from VU’s Bachelor of Human Nutrition have taken part in a study program in India, running in both 2018 and 2019. As part of the tours, students have learnt about Indian agriculture, economic empowerment and traditional medicine. Highlights included visits to an infant undernutrition clinic, rural communities, and a school lunch factory, as well as experiencing a festival in the coastal city of Puri.


Business Sustainability & Social Enterprise Internship

In June 2018, 13 VU students participated in a study tour to Indonesia, working closely with local businesses, non-government organisations and universities to develop and implement four major projects that are environmentally responsible and sustainable. Several of the group’s projects have since been operationalised and are now revenue-generating streams for local communities in Lombok and the Gili Islands.

Bali Sports Foundation Internship

A group of five VU students completed a month-long placement with the Bali Sports Foundation in 2017, supporting the Denpasar-based foundation to enrich the lives of people living with disabilities.

The students worked across a range of programs including marketing and promotions, training athletes with disabilities for wheelchair basketball and rugby, and helping with the classification of athletes from elite sports.

Collaborative Arts Project

In this study tour, held in 2018 and 2019, VU students joined forces with staff and students from University of Gajah Mada (UGM) and Institut Seni Indonesia (ISI) to plan, undertake and complete a series of creative projects. Friendships were formed as students learnt about each other’s lives, art and culture. The study tour was so successful that both UGM and ISI have agreed to continue the program with VU.


Paramedicine Study Tour

In July 2018, students from VU’s Bachelor of Paramedicine spent 10 days working Vanuatu’s emergency services departments to gain critical, hands-on experience. One group shadowed ProMedical Vanuatu, a 24-hour ambulance service, while another group worked with doctors and nurses at public and private hospitals. VU’s $1600 donation raised by the visiting students was a much-needed financial boost to Port Vila’s developing medical and emergency services.

Students on study tour in India
Study tour students
Paramedicine students on study tour in Vanuatu

How to apply

Study tours are organised by VU academic staff and involve a group of students travelling overseas, usually for two to four weeks.

Study tours may travel to multiple cities – or even countries and territories – as part of the program. Study tours provide you with an international insight into your chosen field of study that can’t be gained inside the classroom.

Your course or unit coordinator will usually advise you of upcoming opportunities. As study tours are integrated into the curriculum of VU degrees, you generally do not need to seek credit approval for them.


Many study tours may be partially funded, particularly if they are going to the Asia–Pacific region. Fees vary depending on the study tour.

Future study tours

Contact your College or School to join a study tour or to find out more.

Study tour paramedicine students vanuatu