I-PREP students Zijun Zhuang, left, Afreen Fatima and Jia Fan with Crowe Horwath Partner Mark Harrison.

The University of Tasmania is calling for Tasmanian businesses to open their doors to talented and enthusiastic international students, unlocking benefits for both the students and their businesses.

Local businesses are being encouraged to offer international students internships as part of the University’s I-PREP program, which is supported by the Tasmanian Government.

The program aims to give international students, at both the University and TasTAFE, an opportunity to engage in and make a valuable contribution to a Tasmanian workplace.

The program educates international students in Australian workplace culture, communication skills and how to apply for a job. Students are then eligible to apply for an internship in a Tasmanian organisation to put their skills into practice.

The University’s new Industry Engagement Coordinator, Penny Stringer, is excited about the potential of the initiative.

“We are looking for organisations that are willing to open their doors to the very talented international students we have studying in Tasmania. There are many benefits to hosting an intern including enriching and diversifying your organisational culture with someone who has a youthful perspective, energy and global knowledge,” Mrs Stringer said.

“For the student they get hands-on work experience in a real workplace, as well as developing transferable skills and experience for their resume. For employers, it’s an opportunity to develop and mentor the future employees and leaders of Tasmania. It’s a win-win for both parties.”

The I-PREP program is a key element of the University’s new Career Connect initiative, which aims to build closer ties and networks between the University and local employers.

Career Connect will give employers the opportunity to source talent and engage with students in a range of creative ways from offering mentoring, advertising jobs, hosting interns and work experiences and holding on-campus expos.

“We want to start a conversation between the business community and the University of Tasmania about how we can work together to develop a productive workforce,” Mrs Stringer said.

The I-PREP program will be formally launched by the Minister for State Growth, Peter Gutwein, on August 14th.

Employers interested in hosting an I-PREP intern or learning more about Career Connect should contact Leap.Connect@utas.edu.au.