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  • 01 September 2021 9:17 AM | Anonymous

    The Student Accommodation Association (SAA) is delighted to welcome David Riordan, the Principal consultant for Thalassa Consulting as a co-opted member of the 2021/2022 SAA National Committee.

    David brings a wealth of experience from his 30-year career in the VET sector, mostly as a Senior Executive. He has had several high profile roles, CEO of the NSW Department of Education International, Director of Sydney TAFE one of the largest TAFE institutes in the country, CEO Of the Office of Communities and Director of City Services at the City of Sydney. David has recently been working across the International Education Industry assisting organisations focus on their Post-COVID Business Models. He coordinated the June 2021 Australia China Business Council Education Symposium and has been facilitating national International Education Industry Roundtables (IEIR) focusing on the return of international students.

  • 09 August 2021 4:13 PM | Anonymous

    SAA is proud to announce that Varsity Apartments (Queensland) is the first property in Australia to achieve NPAS accreditation, confirming that the property meets the full set of industry led minimum standards and operates accommodation for the exclusive use of students.

    “We are extremely proud to be a NPAS accredited property and look forward to the continuing success of this scheme” said Karen Netherwood, Director, Varsity Apartments.

    “The application process for the NPAS was easy to follow and the administration support from the SAA was excellent. Collating the submission criteria highlighted the areas of strength in our business framework and also, areas that could be improved - a highly useful exercise indeed."

    "We run Varsity Apartments, the largest student accommodation complex on the Sunshine Coast, Qld. We are heading into our 10th year in this complex and are constantly looking for ways to improve our service and business brand. As a member of the Student Accommodation Association (SAA), our application for the National Property Accreditation Scheme (NPAS) was a key step towards strengthening our reputation within the student accommodation industry. Being part of this industry standard that provides clarity for national education stakeholders, students and agents made perfect sense. We feel that the NPAS provides a cohesive platform for the growth and reputation of the student accommodation industry as a whole and also on an individual level.” Karen concluded.

  • 21 July 2021 4:17 PM | Anonymous

    The AIEC 2021 will be run on the Gold Coast or online from 5 to 8 October 2021 to explore new horizons for international education. The event will be run virtually and will be an opportunity to learn, share, network and be part of the conversation.

    The Student Accommodation Association will be introducing the National Property Accreditation Scheme to the conference participants. 


  • 16 June 2021 4:17 PM | Anonymous

    The Student Accommodation Association has lodged a submission on behalf of members for the Australian Strategy for International Education Consultation Paper.

    The submission included key priorities and measures to improve the international student experience, changes to make Australia more globally competitive and working together with different stakeholders to create a unique Australian education experience.

    • Key priorities: 
    Reset the accommodation message by promoting NPAS accredited properties as a clear and consistent message to future international student intakes.
    • Improve international student experience: 
    Education providers could look to increase their level of commitment to delivering the overall international education experience for students, including non–core business elements such as student accommodation.
    Align themselves with quality student accommodation providers with the protection of NPAS.
    • Changes to make Australia more globally competitive: 
    Consideration be given by education providers to packaging student accommodation as part of the education offering, enabling students to immerse themselves in a diverse multi-cultural student residential community and by doing so develop the personal skills and cultural comfort required to prosper later in life.
    Expanding the obligations of an education provider through changes to the ESOS Act requiring them to provide secure access to quality student accommodation controlled or provided in partnership with an NPAS accredited provider. Required capacity could be based on a percentage of the number of enrolled international students with the education provider.
    • Education providers, governments and other stakeholders working together:
    • An international education offering that incorporates both living and learning experience
    • A set of pre-enrolment (pre-departure) material consistently distributed by Australian education stakeholders to international students offshore to set quality experience expectations and prepare students to have their expectations met.
    • Skills for the future: 
    • Life Skills – student accommodation environments provide students with a supported platform from which they can transition from the close care of their family on to a pathway of personal growth.
    • Improve employability outcomes:
    • Cultural comfort – student accommodation environments provide Australian and international students with exposure to a variety of languages, culture and food, an experience and opportunity that may not be derived from their learning experience alone.
    • Cultural comfort is an important attribute for graduates to acquire to compete in a globally competitive labour market.
    • Creating a unique Australian education experience: 
    Design and promote the Australian education experience around both the learning and living experience.
    • Improving community support for international education:

    A commitment by Australian international education stakeholders to provide a clear pathway by which international students can set themselves up to get the most out of their international education experience to reduce the risk of exploitation, or isolating themselves (impacting on their language ability and personal skills set development) will improve their capacity and confidence in engaging with members of the wider community.

    • Other suggestions:
    • Australian education stakeholder endorsement for NPAS as part of the post pandemic recovery strategy
    • Broaden the focus to improve the Australian living experience for international students
    • Consider how student accommodation can add value to the Australian education offering.


  • 16 June 2021 3:56 PM | Anonymous

    We're delighted to welcome Western Union Business Solutions as an SAA Corporate Sponsor in 2021/22.
    Western Union Business Solutions is excited to partner with the Student Accommodation Association (SAA) and support its members through our expertise in managing international payments.
    Western Union Business Solution’s WU® GlobalPay for Students platform enables student accommodation providers to improve their international student experience by offering fast, easy and affordable ways for international residents to pay their application fees, security deposits and rent while also delivering efficiency and reconciliation gains for your business. Your international residents will experience a modern e-commerce feel, with competitive exchange rates, flexible payment options and real time updates.
    For more information or to arrange a demonstration contact 

    Mark Woolf, Sales Manager Education Australia at or on 0448 442 323.

  • 28 May 2021 10:30 AM | Deleted user

    The Student Accommodation Association was invited to participate in the Capital City Committee Adelaide - Post COVID City: Driving Economic Recovery and Growth forum at the Adelaide Town Hall on Friday 21 May 2021.

    The forum was addressed by both The Honourable Steven Marshall MP, Premier of South Australia and The Right Honourable The Lord Mayor of Adelaide, Sandy Verschoor.

    The centre piece for the morning's session was the delivery and subsequent conversation pertaining to the Deloitte Access Economics Post - COVID City: Driving Economic Recovery and Growth (Foundation research report).

    Student Accommodation is briefly referred to under Education (Page 28). A copy of the report is attached for your reference.

    View Report here
  • 30 April 2021 4:14 PM | Anonymous

    SAA members and industry peers gathered together at our NPAS Launch Networking Event in Sydney on 30 April 2021.

    After the virtual NPAS presentation delivered by SAA President Geoff Denison, participants had an opportunity to hear from the panel, facilitated by Ron De Haan GAICD, about the industry post-pandemic recovery. We'd like to thank Peter MackeyAnouk DarlingThomson Ch'ng and David Riordan for the engaging discussion.

    We would also like to thank all the attendees and stakeholders for their participation.

  • 15 April 2021 6:45 AM | Deleted user

    The Hon Alan Tudge MP Minister for Education and Youth recently spoke at the RMIT campus and shared his views on international education, also marking the formal launch of the consultation process to develop the new International Education Strategy for 2021 to 2030.

    He emphasized on the contribution of international education sector on the economic growth of Australia and the impact due to COVID-19 in 2020 and 2021. Touching upon the roadmap for the next 6-12 months, he mentioned that while the situation is unpredictable, there is an optimistic view that international students might be allowed back into Australia for the first semester of 2022. 

    He applauded the pivot by major universities to digital learning but also highlighted the key objectives of international education and the contribution of diversity through international students towards fulfilment of these objectives.

    The Australian Government’s commitment to expanding the role of international education in the post COVID-19 world will boost economic growth, foster foreign diplomacy and contribute to Australia’s national security.

    "The impact of COVID-19 has forced universities to rethink business models and with large numbers of international student arrivals not anticipated until Semester 1 2022, it is critical that the government and higher education sector work together to develop a model that maintains our competitive advantage in international education and research, while ensuring Australia has the skills and expertise required to meet our national priorities,” said The Group of Eight Chief Executive Vicki Thomson.

    View The Hon Alan Tudge MP's address here.

    View the Media Release from The Group of Eight here.

  • 08 April 2021 4:11 PM | Anonymous

    SAA members, industry participants and state government representatives came together to have all their questions answered about the National Property Accreditation Scheme at the NPAS Launch Networking Event in Adelaide on 08 April 2021.

    Thank you to our presenter and facilitator Geoff Denison and Dr Paul Tosch, to the panel members Mary Ann Seow,  Andrew Houey, Melissa Tracey and Anmol Saini for their valuable insights on the sector post-pandemic recovery and to all the attendees for their participation.

  • 26 February 2021 3:16 PM | Anonymous

    SAA Member panelists had an opportunity to speak at the International Education Association of Australia (IEAA) Student Life Forum during the Student Accommodation in a Post-COVID-19 World discussion on the 26th of February 2021.

    Facilitated by SAA President Geoff Denison, representatives from University Managed, Purpose Built Student Accommodation and Residential Colleges shared their valuable insights into their COVID-19 journey to date from a student accommodation perspective and the important part the National Property Accreditation Scheme (NPAS) will play in supporting the post COVID-19 recovery.

    SAA Member Panellists included: 

    • Geoff Denison, President, Student Accommodation Association; Associate Director, Accommodation Services, The University of Adelaide
    • Steve Diack, National Relationships Manager, Scape
    • Amit Mitra, Manager, Housing Services, University of Technology Sydney
    • Dr Paul Tosch (MAICD), Chief Executive Officer, Lincoln College Inc

    Event participants also had an opportunity to hear from Bassina Farbenblum, Associate Professor, UNSW Faculty of Law; Director, UNSW Human Rights Clinic; Founding Co-Director, Global Migrant Worker Justice Initiative who presented findings of her research into international student exploration in accommodation. You can access the research papers following the links below: