For many students and graduates, starting a career in the Asia Pacific can feel like a mammoth task – a goal only achievable after many years working in Australia.

About this series

Griffith University students and alumni provide useful information on how to gain an Asia-Pacific experience while studying! Engaging with the Asia-Pacific is key to unlocking cross-cultural understanding, employability and widening your global experience. Hosted by Griffith New Colombo Plan Scholars, this series will cover scholarship and grant opportunities, in country experiences, volunteering and career opportunities in the Asia- Pacific.

About this session

In our last webinar of EXPLORING ASIA, New Colombo Plan (NCP) scholars Odin Lowsley and James Fairley speak with inspiring leaders in this space — Rob Malicki (the co-architect of the NCP), Elise Giles (Board Director of the Australia-Vietnam Young Leadership Dialogue) and Brad McConachie (RMIT, Vietnam) — to discuss leapfrogging the pack and ‘Starting your career in the Asia Pacific’.


Griffith alumnus Elise Giles is a Capability Development Manager at Asialink Business. She is currently delivering Asialink’s Leaders program and was responsible for project managing the New Colombo Plan Ambassador and Alumni Program, in partnership with DFAT. Elise is also a Director on the Board of the Australia-Vietnam Young Leadership Dialogue & Steering Committee Director. She is a former Prime Minister’s Australia-Asia Scholar to Hong Kong. Elise has worked and studied across Asia, including Vietnam, Indonesia, Hong Kong, Singapore and South Korea, and has a wealth of experience engaging with government, private and community sector in these international environments.

Rob Malicki is the co-architect of DFAT’s New Colombo Plan, Founder and CEO of AIM Overseas, CEO of The Global Society, Founder of ‘A Life That Travels’. He is passionate about overseas study and the way that it transforms young people. His mission, since his own student exchange in 2000, has been to help more young Australians make the most out of their own overseas study experiences. With over 15 years of experience, he is one of Australia’s leading experts and commentators in the ‘outbound mobility’ of Australian uni students.

Griffith alumnus Dr Bradley McConachie started his career in Beijing with the Australia Studies Centre at Peking University and UNESCO in which he managed international development and research projects in China, Mongolia, North Korea, South Korea and Japan. Following this he worked in Thailand for private companies seeking to develop their rising executive staff to better understand international business culture. Most recently he has taken up a position in Ho Chi Minh City working for RMIT Vietnam managing international research consortiums between Australia, Vietnam and Europe and maintains an Adjunct Fellowship in the Griffith Asia Institute. This year he was recognised by Griffith University for his contribution to public diplomacy research with a Research Excellence Award and receipt of the Chancellor’s medal.

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