ACAA Column: Onwards & Upwards


The ACAA has a lot to celebrate this year in line with it’s 5th anniversary.

As we celebrate the 40th Anniversary of Australia China Diplomatic Relations later this year, we also celebrate the 5th Anniversary of the Australia China Alumni Association, now the largest Australia-China people-to-people organization of any kind.
Currently we connect some 6,500 alumni across China and by year end we will reach 7,500 alumni based on current growth rates, and then some 10,000 alumni by the end of 2013. We are also proud to now count 70 percent of all Australian universities amongst our partners. Below are some updates on our activities over the last two months.

New Shenzhen Director
With some 100+ alumni now registered with the ACAA in Shenzhen, we have appointed alumni volunteer Stephen Shen as Director of Development in Shenzhen. Stephen is the current Head of Reengineering at Standard Chartered Bank (SCB), and formerly, Associate Director of South China, Vice President of Strategic Marketing- GE Capital. He is also a CPA Aust. Member and graduated from Macquarie University with a Masters in Accounting. Stephen will be volunteering his time with the ACAA to better support and connect alumni in Shenzhen. Keep an eye out for upcoming events and networking opportunities!
If you would like to contact Stephen you can reach him at: Want to volunteer in your area? Contact the ACAA at

Inaugural Austrade China Careers Fair
In April the ACAA was delighted to be a contributing partner at the inaugural Austrade China Careers Fair held in Shanghai. The event, organized by Austrade, was a huge success with some 15 University careers offices joining together with almost 50 companies and some 1,200+ alumni. The event was also supported by, one of China’s leading HR & recruitment websites.

The ACAA had a booth at the Fair and also organized a panel of alumni speakers who highlighted their career stories and provided some tips to younger alumni. We hope to soon have video of this panel session available online. Many thanks to all our volunteers who gave generously of their time and helped make the event a huge success! We hope this can become an annual event.


Events Galore
Over the last few months we have met with representatives from RMIT, the University of Western Sydney, the University of South Australia, CQUniversity, Griffith University and the University of Southern Queensland and as each group came through, some great Alumni events were organized. We have also held ACAA events such as kicking off the summer calendar with a Badminton Day, launching a Shanghai Alumni leadership series, presenting Alumni speakers at the Beijing and Shanghai CIEET and manned a booth at the Beijing Expat show. We also met with Ken Henry, Special Advisor to the Prime Minister to provide input to the “Australia in an Asian Century” white paper.

ACAA Education Committee / Chinese Government Relations
The ACAA education committee remains very active and hosted an event for 10 Australian University reps in Beijing in April. In may we hold a welcome dinner for the new AEI Counsellor Cathryn Hlavka and have plans for a wine tasting with MOE and MOST staff in June.

ACAA / IELTS 2012 Australia China Alumni Awards
This year, the Australia China Alumni Awards have a new title sponsor – IELTS. IELTS has been a long standing supporter of the Alumni Awards, previously sponsoring the Women in Leadership category in 2010 and 2011. The 2012 Alumni Awards Gala Dinner will be held in Shanghai on September 15, with nominations opening in mid-May, so keep an eye on your inbox and prepare to start nominating!

Graduate & Employer Survey
The ACAA has partnered with AEI to conduct a major survey of alumni graduates and employers across China in coming months. The survey results will help inform government policy and be of great interest to our University partners. We ask for your cooperation and support – and have some great prizes for those who participate. In coming months, we’ll also seek to better understand alumni travel patterns – again via a survey with some great prizes, so stay tuned. 


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