January 24, 2022

A Letter to Offshore Students

Geemal Jayawickrama Geemal Jayawickrama

My Fellow Students,

It’s with a heavy heart that I am writing this today. Everyone on campus is disappointed and frustrated by the latest announcement from the WA government delaying the border opening. We were all excited to welcome each and every one of you to campus from February 5th and those efforts were in full swing with the various initiatives such as the $1500 International Student Grant.

Over the next few days, I will be closely working with the University to get you all an update as to what to expect in the coming weeks. The University has been in urgent contact with the State Government to provide a solution that allows you to safely enter WA as soon as possible. I will not leave any stone unturned and will advocate for the safest and quickest return of all of you to UWA. If you are to continue studying online, I will ensure that University and the Guild provide the best possible University experience for you.

To raise the matter even further within the Guild, I will be raising this motion at Guild Council on Wednesday the 26th. The motion would read as follows;

The 109th Guild Council;

1.1       Will work with the University to find solutions to welcome international students back onto campus in a safe manner

1.2       Calls upon the State Government to reconsider its border closure policies to allow International Students to enter WA in a safe manner

1.3       Calls upon UWA to accommodate the adjustments needed by students to alter their study arrangements after the announcement 

1.4       Encourages all clubs and Departments to continue to engage all offshore students through their social media platforms

If you do have any questions arising, you can use AskUWA  or refer to the FAQs for International Students. If you are not able to find any answers there, please do email me at [email protected] and I will do my very best to get you the answer or point you in the right direction.

On a more personal note, I cannot imagine the disappointment and shock each and every one of you will be feeling. The constantly changing nature of this situation is taxing and not easy to travel through. After 2 years, I can only hope that the light at the end of the tunnel is approaching and will shine very bright on everyone.

Until then, I urge you all to please make sure to look after yourselves and to take a break from all this whenever possible. We live in very uncertain times and times like these always make us anxious and overwhelmed. If you need, you can call the Medibank Student Health and Support Line on 1800 887 283 at any time of the day or night. They can speak to you and advise you accordingly.

Please feel free to send me an email or a message to the ISD social media pages anytime.

Remember, you are not alone. I am with you. We are with you.

Geemal Jayawickrama
2022 International Students’ Department President