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There are few choices as big as the decision to study overseas.  The stakes are high emotionally, academically, and financially. It is a decision so big that it can’t, and shouldn’t, be made alone.

Students need someone they can trust in their corner. IDP has been in the corners of our students and partners for 50 years. Our success comes from connecting the right student with the right institution.

The COVID-19 pandemic meant that the most common ways in which students accessed our support – e.g. study expos and face-to-face counselling - were taken away, we needed to build new ways to be by their sides.

At first, we needed to accept three facts:

1 - In a virtual environment, the role of human connection and integrity grows

2 - Big talking websites and apps cannot emulate trusted, human expertise

3 - The focus can never drift from setting genuine students up for success

What happened and what did we learn?

We all know 2020 was the year screen-to-screen replaced face-to-face. For a global company like IDP technology was used as a tool to break down the barriers of time and distance.

Our Virtual Events platform was launched globally. More than 110,000 students logged on to connect with universities and colleges this year.

Key to the success of these events were the pre-event interviews and screening role of our counsellors. By ensuring the right students were connecting with the right universities, everyone at the event could jump in with meaningful conversations.

Genuine students, genuine intentions, genuine connections.

Here is the recap of our largest event, the IDP India Conclave, attracting 15,000 students and their families.

Students turned to our apps

To support the real-time conversations with universities and counsellors, our students also turned to our apps. Our students can now track their application, hear video responses from universities and connect with our counsellors, right from their phones.

Hear Lakehead University in Canada provide video advice for students via our Ask IDP app.

Our North Star – driven by our students

In early 2020, travel restrictions and border closures were changing daily. When you have been planning your studies for more than two years, understanding how these changes impacted your lifelong goals was tough.

With an unparalleled global community of students across the world, IDP felt a responsibility to share our students’ motivations and concerns with universities and governments.  We needed to be a voice for our students and show them they were being heard.

The resulting research series, International Student Crossroads, proved to be the insights key sector stakeholders needed. In preparing the surveys, we partnered with government departments and peak bodies, including CBIE and UUKi to ensure the insights captured could be used by destination countries to shape their policy decisions.

To see this in action, take a look at how Griffith College in Australia formed their quarantine support program based on Crossroads insights.

One thing hasn’t changed…

The thing that hasn’t changed is the same core reason IDP has led the international recruitment sector for decades. Our expert global counsellor team, backed by consistent quality verification processes, shone throughout 2020 as they came together to set students and clients up for success. This is what we have always done: our expertise, rigour, pride and integrity in our work are what set us apart.

The proof is in our higher visa acceptance rates. Over the past four years, more than 90% of visa applications by IDP students from India travelling to Canada have been approved.

The proof is in our satisfied customers: more than 9 in 10 students would refer IDP to their family or friends.

The proof is in the generation of globally ambitious people who have studied through IDP and are now changing the world. Students like Ralph and Gary, and team members like Amrita.

Looking ahead

As we progress into 2021, we are ready with new tools, new connections, new services and new opportunities.

To our institutional partners, thank you. It is your shared passion for student success that makes our work possible.

To our students, we applaud you. The grit and resilience you have shown throughout the pandemic in pursuit of your study goals make us confident you are unstoppable and will achieve your biggest goals.

CP - Image - Franki
Franki Clemens18 January 2021