New Colombo Plan Mobility Project

The New Colombo Plan Mobility Project is a unique opportunity for students to be exposed to the high quality of education and manufacturing operations that define modern Japan.

The School of Mechanical and Mining Engineering, MECH4950: Advanced Manufacturing in Practices course is a successful recipient of a 2021 New Colombo Plan Mobility Program titledTowards a Hydrogen Future, Sustainable Energy Industries in Japan - Opportunities for Australia's Future Engineers.“ This funding will support 22 students who are enrolled in the School of Mechanical and Mining Engineering at The University of Queensland to participate in a two-week program based in Fukuoka, Japan. Successful applicants will travel for this study tour in late June to mid July 2024.

The New Colombo Plan is a signature initiative of the Australian Government which aims to lift knowledge of the Indo-Pacific in Australia by supporting Australian undergraduates to study and undertake internships in the region. Selected students will each be offered a mobility grant of $3,000 to cover a part of course fees, flights and accommodation, to have an on-site exchange to Kyushu University (KU) involving a series of lectures and site visits to industrial plants. Lecture topics will include Advanced Engineering Technologies with a focus on the Japanese Manufacturing Sector and Japanese Language. The Kyushu Economic Federation (KEF) and Fukuoka Strategy Conference for Hydrogen Energy (FSCHE) will facilitate industry tours to manufacturing facilities in the Fukuoka Prefecture including Nippon Steel, Fukuoka Hydrogen and a nuclear power plant. Please note, visits are subject to change. Please note the site visits and companies involved are subject to change.

This information is correct at the time of publication, and may be subject to change.

Participating organisations

Kyushu University

Kyushu University is a Japanese national university located in Fukuoka, Kyushu. It is the 4th oldest university in Japan and one of the former Imperial Universities.

Visit the Kyushu University website

Kyushu Economic Federation (KEF)

KEF will facilitate industry tours involving their affiliate members (e.g. Toyota and Mitsubishi Heavy Industry) to students.

Learn more about the association

Fukuoka, Japan

Fukuoka is the capital city of Fukuoka Prefecture, situated on the northern shore of Japanese island Kyushu. It’s known for ancient temples and beaches.

Learn more about Fukuoka, Japan

Kitakyushu City

Today, the city is forging ahead with diverse activities based on the concept of Kitakyushu as a world capital of sustainable development and a technological capital of Asia.

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Who is eligible?

To be eligible to participate in this Mobility Program, you must:

  • be an Australian citizen, aged 18-28 (provisions are in place for 6 students over the age of 28 to participate);
  • is not a citizen and does not have residency rights in the Host Location in which they will undertake the Mobility Project;
  • be undertaking a Bachelor degree (or Bachelor Honours Degree) or BE/ME in one of the following engineering fields; Mechanical Engineering, Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering, Mechanical and Materials Engineering, Mechatronic Engineering, Mining Engineering, Mining & Geotechnical Engineering, Chemical & Materials Engineering, in the semester of application;
  • be able to enrol in MECH4950 - Advanced Manufacturing in Practice (2 units) in Teaching Period 5 2024. See MECH4950 below for further details.
  • be able to attend all activities including a pre-departure seminar, travel to Japan in late June to mid July 2024;
  • hold (or be eligible for) a valid Australian passport with more than 6 months validity. Permanent residents of Australia, or students with current Japanese citizenship or permanent residency are not eligible to apply;
  • not have received a New Colombo Plan short-term mobility grant previously; and
  • Japanese language proficiency is not required. 
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  • The NCP grant is only available to students who have an elective still available in their program of study. By applying for this program, you agree that you are eligible to enrol in MECH4950 as an elective towards your program;
  • If you are enrolled in the BE/ME, please be aware that MECH4950 must be counted as an elective towards your undergraduate program. It is an NCP requirement that MECH4950 must be credited towards your undergraduate program;
  • If it is determined upon your graduation that MECH4950 was superfluous to your program requirements, an earlier elective taken in your program will be discarded;
  • Students are strongly recommended to check with faculty if they have an elective available at the time of application;
  • The MECH4950 study tour is eligible for Engineering Professional Practice (EPP) hours; and
  • Standard tuition fees apply to all students enrolling in MECH4950 (added to your payment scheme such as HECS debt etc).
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The $3,000 AUD mobility grant can be used to contribute to your trip costs including:

  • Approx. $1,000 AUD program fee that includes the Kyushu University (KU) lecture series and Kyushu Economic Federation (KEF) industrial visits. The program fee is stipulated by Kyushu University and is paid by The University of Queensland directly to KU.
  • Approx. $2,000+ AUD for flights.
  • Approx. $1,000 AUD for accommodation. 
  • Meals and local transport costs during the program.
  • ISOS & UQ have an expectation that travellers will have access up to AUD500 funds for medical treatment. Please refer to the UQ Travel Insurance - Students Fact Sheet, for additional information.

Please note, once The University of Queensland has deducted Kyushu’s program fee from the $3,000 AUD mobility grant, students will then be transferred the remaining funds to contribute to the above costs.

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Important dates

Applications open: Monday, 12 February 2024 at 10:00am.

Information Session: Friday, 23 February 2024 at 10:00am. (Information Session Slides) 

Applications close: Monday, 11 March 2024 at 10:00am.

Application outcome: Early April 2024.

Program dates: 27 June 2024 - 16 July 2024.

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Selection criteria

The following are the selection criteria against which applicants will be assessed. Applicants should address each criterion and limit their responses to 300 words per criterion. Applicants should use the guidance in the square brackets to assist with their responses.

  • Demonstrated academic excellence.
    • This criterion relates to academic excellence as demonstrated through the applicant's graded average achieved in tertiary studies and to academic awards and commendations at the tertiary level.
  • Demonstrated leadership in the community.
    • Applicants may consider including volunteer and not-for-profit roles and/or activities they have undertaken in their local community, overseas or in their university.
  • Professional development
    • Applicants describe how this experience enhances their cultural awareness, employment potential and their ability to operate in new and changing environments. The applicant also demonstrates an understanding of the overarching goals of the New Colombo Plan.

Other considerations

In addition to the selection criteria, where applicants have similarly meritorious claims, preference may be given to applicants whose inclusion will promote:

  • balance and diversity in fields of study and across the genders;
  • opportunities for students who have not previously received any Australia Government funded off-shore scholarship; and
  • representation from diverse student groups (including but not limited to: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students; students from regional/remote areas; first in your immediate family to attend university; students with disabilities or students from a non-English speaking background).

A selection panel consisting of representatives from the School of Mechanical and Mining Engineering will consider all applications. 

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How to apply

Applications must be submitted through the online application form. Late applications will not be accepted.

The following details will be requested in the online nomination form:

  • Name;
  • Student ID
  • UQ email address
  • Mobile phone number;
  • Date of birth;
  • Gender;
  • Degree and plan in which the applicant is enrolled;
  • Current cumulative grade point average (GPA); 
  • Equity group status;
  • Japanese citizenship or residency status; 
  • Previous NCP grant recipient status; and
  • Responses to the selection criteria;


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If you have any questions or would like to know more about the program, please contact:

Miss Nicholle Elford
School of Mechanical and Mining Engineering

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