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International Education Agent Policy

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Section 1 -  Purpose of Policy

(1) This Policy sets out the University policy in relation to the recruitment, management and termination of International Education Agents.

(2) On behalf of the University of Wollongong (UOW) and UOW College Australia (UOWCA), UOW Global Enterprises (UOWGE) is responsible for appointing and managing international student recruitment Agents.  This arrangement is underpinned via the International Student Recruitment Services Agreement.

(3) In carrying out this responsibility, UOWGE is committed to working with only those Agents who demonstrate:

  1. a comprehensive understanding of international student motivation and student requirements: the Australian culture as experienced by international students; the higher education sector and appropriate legislative knowledge;
  2. an in-depth knowledge of UOW and UOWCA programs, policies and requirements; and
  3. honesty, integrity, and the highest-level of ethical standards.

(4) The UOWGE framework for appointing, monitoring and terminating education Agents on behalf of UOW and UOWCA, is designed to ensure compliance with all relevant legislative and regulatory requirements established under the:

  1. Education Services for Overseas Students Act 2000 (ESOS) and Education Services for Overseas Students Regulations 2019;
  2. National Code of Practice for Providers of Education and Training to Overseas Students 2018 (National Code 2018); (specifically Standards 1, 2, 3, 4 and 7);
  3. Migration Act 1958 and Migration (Education) Act (2007);
  4. Australian International Education and Training Agent Code of Ethics; and
  5. Privacy Act 1988.
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Section 2 - Application and Scope - Exclusions or Special Conditions

(5) This Policy applies to:

  1. UOW and UOWCA;
  2. all UOWGE Global Student Recruitment staff and UOWGE in-country consultants who deliver the following for UOW/UOWCA;
  3. recruitment of international students into relevant campuses and courses in Australia;
  4. management of Education Agent performance;

(6) All UOWGE Global Student Recruitment staff and UOWGE in-country consultants who contribute to the following for UOW/UOWCA:

  1. marketing of relevant campuses and courses in Australia; and
  2. administering Admissions/Compliance of future and current international students.
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Section 3 - Policy Principles

(7)  UOWGE, on behalf of UOW and UOWCA, will:

  1. select only reputable International Education Agents and ensure those Agents act honestly and with integrity;
  2. manage their International Education Agents in a professional and responsible manner;
  3. enter into a written agreement with each International Education Agent approved to represent it in accordance with the Agent assessment process as described under Section 5 below;
  4. maintain an accurate list of approved International Education Agents, which will be published on UOW and UOWCA websites;
  5. ensure all relevant UOW and UOWCA business units have access to the accurate list of authorised International Education Agents;
  6. include the name of the International Education Agent on the Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE) where applicable;
  7. require their International Education Agents to have appropriate knowledge and understanding of the Australian international education industry;
  8. provide adequate training and information for International Education Agents, including their obligations under this policy, the individual Agency Agreement and Australian migration laws; and
  9. ensure that International Education Agents have access to accurate and up-to-date marketing information.
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Section 4 - International Education Agent Functions

(8) Individual persons or organisations, onshore or offshore, may be engaged by the UOW and/or UOWCA as an International Education Agent to assist UOW and UOWCA in recruiting international students pursuant to the terms of individual Agency Agreements.

(9) International Education Agents are representatives only within the terms of individual Agency Agreements.

(10) As an Agent of UOW and UOWCA, all International Education Agents must abide by the principles of the National Code and the terms of their signed individual agency agreement.

(11) The principles of the National Code of Practice for Providers of Education and Training to Overseas Students 2018, as they relate to the conduct of International Education Agents, are derived from Standard 3 of the National Code. An International Education Agent must not:

  1. be engaged in, or have previously been engaged in, dishonest practices, including the deliberate attempt to recruit a student where this clearly conflicts with the obligations of registered providers under Standard 7 of the National Code (Transfer between registered providers);
  2. be currently facilitating, or have previously facilitated, the enrolment of a student who the education Agent believes will not comply with the conditions of his or her student visa;
  3. use the Provider Registration and International Students Management System (PRISMS) to create Confirmations of Enrolment for other than a bona fide student; or
  4. provide immigration advice where not authorised under the Migration Act 1958 to do so.
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Section 5 - Appointment of International Education Agents

(12) UOW and UOWCA have a number of approved education Agents to represent their interests in defined territories. UOWGE may approach prospective Agents to apply to be authorised Agents of UOW and UOWCA.  UOWGE will also be open to receiving applications from education Agents who are seeking appointment as an authorised Agent.

(13) Only Agents with a minimum of two years of experience directly representing universities that are ranked within the Top 20 in Australia, will be encouraged to apply.

(14) Agents will be appointed in accordance with the following contractual conditions:

  1. New Agents will be appointed for one year and will be subject to an end of year review.
  2. If the Agent review confirms satisfactory performance, the Agent will be reappointed for two years and will be subject to annual reviews. If the Agent review confirms unsatisfactory performance the Agent will not have their contract renewed.
  3. A further three-year contract will be issued subject to satisfactory performance being confirmed at the end of the initial three-year period.

(15) Agents will be appointed via the following process:

  1. Agents will be primarily sourced by UOWGE’s Global Student Recruitment Managers and in-country consultants via participation in pre-screened events and workshops, recommendations from partner universities, and recommendations from Austrade or equivalent entities.

(16) Global Student Recruitment Managers will ensure that:

  1. due diligence is conducted on the Agent’s business operation. This includes assessment of registration in the Agent’s jurisdiction.
  2. a complete assessment is conducted on the Agent’s history and the Agent’s recruitment track record with the Top 20 Universities in Australia.
  3. the Agent’s premises is inspected.
  4. the Agent's knowledge of the Australian international education industry is assessed, including an understanding of the principles of the National Code and other requirements relating to the provision of their services.
  5. counsellors are assessed via interview to ascertain their understanding of international student motivation and requirements.

(17) Agents must submit a completed UOW Expression of Interest form or a UOW/UOWCA Authorised Agent Application form and submit either of them to The forms should be completed accurately and include the contact details of at least two referees from Australian Universities. Required supporting documentation includes business registration; certification such as Professional International Education Resources (PIER) – Education Agents Training Course (EATC), where applicable; photographs of the head office premise, and a business plan for promoting UOW/UOWCA.

(18) The Global Student Recruitment Manager from the relevant region will evaluate the application and complete a UOW/UOWCA recommendation report, making a provisional assessment of the applicant’s suitability for appointment.

(19) The two nominated referees will then be contacted by the Global Student Recruitment Manager and the responses provided will be submitted to the UOWGE Global Agent Liaison Officer along with the Agent application. UOWGE reserves the right to request the applicant to provide additional referees if deemed necessary.

(20) The Director Global Student Recruitment Partnerships or nominated delegate will review the application and make a final assessment as to the Agent’s suitability for appointment. Reasons will be provided for the recommended appointment or non-appointment. The outcome and reasons for the outcome will be recorded by the Global Student Agent Liaison Officer in the Agent profile.

(21) If an applicant has been assessed as suitable for appointment, the Global Agent Liaison Officer will complete the UOW/UOWCA Agent Agreement, including all schedules. The terms and conditions of the Agent Agreement include the Agent accepting responsibility and liability for the actions of any Agents acting in the capacity of the Agent’s sub-Agent.

(22) A PDF copy of the Agreement will be sent to UOW and UOWCA for signature, then to the Agent’s University Liaison Officer, via

(23) If the Agent accepts the terms of the Agreement, the Agent will sign and return the Agreement to the Global Agent Liaison Officer at

(24) The Global Agent Liaison Officer will update the new Agent details in accordance with Clause 3.1 of Standard 4 of the National Code, in PRISMS within 24 hours.

(25) The Global Agent Liaison Officer will then update the UOW website and relevant student systems with the new Agent details within 48 hours. 

(26) The Global Agent Liaison Officer will provide the Agent with a Certificate of Representation and with the relevant username and password for submitting student applications through the UOW/UOWCA Agent porta 

(27) The Agent will be able to access all relevant UOW/UOWCA course and marketing materials via the UOW website.

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Section 6 - Training of International Education Agents

(28) The relevant Global Student Recruitment Manager will provide training to the Agent within 30 days of the confirmed appointment.  Training will address the following:

  1. the legislative and regulatory requirements relating to international education in Australia;
  2. Department of Home Affairs (DHA) international student visa requirements and policies;
  3. UOW and UOWCA admissions, fees, compliance and refund policies;
  4. Contract terms and conditions; and
  5. UOW and UOWCA programs, application procedures and marketing guidelines.

(29) At the completion of training, the Global Student Recruitment Manager will identify and communicate to the Agent any demonstrated areas of strength and concern and areas for further Agent training and development. A subsequent, targeted Agent Training Checklist will be forwarded to the Global Agent Liaison Officer for recording.

(30) The Global Student Recruitment Manager will engage with the Agent at least three times a year (in person or virtually), to review performance and identify requirements for further training, particularly in areas that include, but are not limited to, student visa requirements, knowledge on UOW/UOWCA programs and to provide access to current marketing and promotional materials. At the completion of each engagement, the Global Student Recruitment Manager will identify and communicate any areas of concern to the Agent and will advise of further Agent training and development required.  The Manager will update the Agent Training Checklist and will report this to the Global Agent Liaison Officer for recording.

(31) Regular communication will be forwarded to Agents via an Agent newsletter that will be scheduled for release every two months.  This will be the responsibility of the UOWGE Global Student Recruitment Digital Engagement Specialist and the Global Agent Liaison Officer.

(32) In addition, to enable Agents to perform compliantly, timely updates will be provided addressing legislative, regulatory, and/or administrative changes in laws, regulations, policies and procedures pertaining to international students for UOW and UOWCA.

(33) The Director Global Student Recruitment Partnerships or the nominated delegate will work with UOW and UOWCA on post census international student surveys to understand the experience of the student coming through a particular Agent. Surveys will be conducted the week after census for Session 1 and Session 2. Any feedback, trends and concerns analysed through the surveys will be addressed in the training delivered to the Agents.  Any specific feedback for each Agent will form part of the Agent review process.

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Section 7 - Monitoring International Education Agent Performance

(34) UOWGE will actively monitor the performance of all approved Agents to ensure professional behaviour and positive recruitment outcomes, measured by the number of student referrals and the conversion rate to active enrolments at census.  Agent performance will be monitored via the following processes:

  1. The Director Global Student Recruitment Partnerships or a nominated delegate and the Global Agent Liaison Officer will work with UOW Admissions and Compliance teams and UOWCA Admissions to conduct a comprehensive yearly review that analyses Agent performance.  Review components will include:
    1. the number of student applications and their quality and completeness;
    2. the conversion rate of student applications to CoEs;
    3. the incidence of visa rejection;
    4. the conversion rate of CoEs to actual enrolments;
    5. retention rates post census and after 6 months;
    6. aspects of policy and/or procedure requiring modification and/or updates required to Agent training; and
    7. the identification of particular Agents who may require additional training.

(35) Analysis of PRISMS based data entries for each Agent made available under Subsections 175 (3) and (4) of Education Legislation Amendment (Provider Integrity and Other Measures) Act 2017, namely information on:

  1. the number of applications for student visas made by or on behalf of students recruited or otherwise dealt with by an Agent that has been either granted, refused, withdrawn or deemed invalid;
  2. the number of student visas issued to students recruited or otherwise dealt with by an Agent that has been cancelled or has ceased to be in effect;
  3. the number of students accepted for enrolment into courses provided by UOW and UOWCA or by students recruited or otherwise dealt with by an Agent;
  4. the completion rates of accepted students recruited or otherwise dealt with by Agents.

(36) The relevant Global Student Recruitment Manager will evaluate the Agents’ performance against agreed performance criteria, which includes:

  1. acting in a manner which may be negligent, careless or incompetent;
  2. being engaged in false, misleading or unethical advertising and recruitment practices;
  3. not attempting to minimise conflicts of interest and, when they occur, not declaring those conflicts of interest, and thereby not acting in the best interests of international students;
  4. acting in a manner which may be non-compliant with the terms and conditions of the Agent’s Agreement and Schedule; and/or being engaged in false or misleading practices which could harm the integrity of Australian education and training and/or the integrity of UOW/UOWCA programs;
  5. the number of students the Agent has recruited and the conversion rate of student applications to CoEs; the visa rejection rate; the conversion rate from CoEs to actual enrolments and success rate from enrolment to successful completion;
  6. the reasons, where relevant, for apparently unsatisfactory application numbers, conversion and success rates;
  7. the satisfaction of students regarding the performance of the Agent through student surveys;
  8. the accuracy and currency of information and advice provided by the Agent to students;
  9. knowledge of and compliance with Australian legislative and regulatory requirements relating to the recruitment of international students under the ESOS Act and The National Code 2018; and
  10. the overall quality and value of the appointment to UOW and UOW College, Australia.

(37) At the end of each year the performance of every agent will be comprehensively reviewed, drawing on evidence gained from the above three sources. The review schedule and review outcomes will be provided in the form of a UOWGE Agent audit report to key stakeholders including UOW Academic Quality and Standards Division, the UOWCA General Manager, the University Internalisation Committee (UIC) and the University Education Committee (UEC), at the first scheduled committee meetings of the following year.

(38) The Global Student Recruitment Managers will make a recommendation relating to the renewal of each Agent Agreement, and the Director Global Student Recruitment Partnerships will decide whether to:

  1. direct an Agent to undertake additional training to address specific problems and/or notify them of any procedural requirements and changes;
  2. renew an Agent’s contract;
  3. renew an Agent’s contract for a further period subject to certain conditions; or
  4. terminate an Agent’s contract in accordance with the Agent Agreement.
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Section 8 - Renewal of International Education Agent Agreements

(39) If, after successful completion of the current Agent Agreement, UOWGE is satisfied that the Agent has operated ethically, has represented UOW/UOWCA in a professional manner, and has enrolled high quality students to UOW/UOWCA programs, with satisfactory conversion and success ratios, a renewal of the Authorised Agent Agreement may be offered to the Agent in accordance with clause 1.3 above. The renewal process is as follows:

  1. The Global Agent Liaison Officer will ask the Agent to complete a UOW/UOWCA renewal form.
  2. Upon receipt of the renewal form, a new signed Agent Agreement will be sent by the Global Agent Liaison Officer.
  3. If the Agent accepts the terms of the Agreement s/he will counter-sign the Agreement and return it via
  4. The new Agreement will be filed in the Agent profile and any necessary updates made to the UOW/UOWCA website.
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Section 9 - Suspension of International Education Agent Agreements

(40) Without limiting UOW/UOWCA rights under clause 12.5 of the Agent Agreement, UOWGE may at its sole discretion suspend an Agent Agreement immediately if it has reasonable grounds to believe that the Agent (or where applicable the sub-Agent of the Agent):

  1. has breached a term of the agreement;
  2. has been found to be performing unsatisfactorily via the review processes outlined above;
  3. has received a complaint considered serious enough by UOW/UOWCA to warrant suspension;
  4. has engaged in conduct that UOW/UOWCA reasonably regards as detrimental to its reputation;
  5. is charged with a breach of any law or is the subject of proceedings or investigations commenced or threatened by a public body whether of a state, territory or the Commonwealth of Australia or Territory; or
  6. is charged with a breach of applicable local law unless Standards 4.5 and 4.6 of the National Code 2018 mandate against such suspension.

(41) UOWGE will notify UOW/UOWCA of its decision.

(42) UOWGE will lift the suspension when the Agent (or where applicable a sub-Agent) has satisfied that the reason for suspension has been adequately resolved. UOWGE will notify UOW/UOWCA of its decision.

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Section 10 - Termination of International Education Agents

(43) UOWGE on behalf of UOW/UOWCA may terminate an Agent Agreement at its discretion by giving the Agent 30 days’ written notice. Termination of an Agent’s Agreement will be automatic if UOWGE knows, or based on reasonable grounds, concludes that the Agent has engaged in criminal conduct, and that the Agent’s known or suspected actions will be reported to the relevant authorities.

(44) If the Agent identifies the cause of a recognised breach as being one of their employees or sub-Agents; provides valid evidence to support this and takes immediate action to dismiss the responsible employee and/or terminate the sub-Agent’s Agreement, then UOWGE on behalf of UOW/UOWCA may decide to retain the Agent, on the basis that the Agent undertakes additional training deemed necessary and as specified by UOWGE.

(45) Termination or non-renewal of an Agent Agreement will occur in cases of demonstrable or highly suspected:

  1. breaches of a term in the Agent Agreement;
  2. enrolment of an unsatisfactory number of students; poor recruitment conversion; an unacceptable level of visa rejection, and poor success/retention rates;
  3. a lack of adequate and sufficient reasons for the disappointing performance as specified above;
  4. unacceptable levels of student and/or third-party satisfaction with the performance of the Agent;
  5. inadequate representation or misrepresentation of UOW/UOWCA, it's subsidiary and associated providers, their programs, courses and services to students;
  6. evidence of non-compliance with the ESOS Act and the National Code 2018 standards;
  7. demonstrated grounds for believing that an Agent engaged in unethical, unprofessional and/or criminal conduct in representing UOW/UOWCA; and
  8. unsatisfactory overall value of the appointment to UOW/UOWCA.

(46) When UOWGE decides not to renew or terminate an Agent agreement the decision and reasons will be conveyed to the Agent in question, using the Authorised Agent Termination email, and the termination will take place when the Agent has formally served a 30 day notice period. If the termination is based on criminal conduct, The Department of Education (DET) and DHA will be notified of the termination.

(47) The Global Agent Liaison Officer will update the Agent Audit Matrix and ensure all University systems including PRISMS are updated.

(48) The Agent’s students will be notified of the termination/non-renewal, and invited to submit an UOW/UOWCA Change of Agent form.

(49) UOWGE will ensure that no further applications are received from the Agent.

(50) Upon termination of an Authorised Agent Agreement, the Agent must:

  1. submit all applications and fees from prospective students received up to and including the termination date;
  2. cease all promotional activity on behalf of UOW/UOWCA, and its subsidiary and associated providers;
  3. submit no further student applications, and
  4. claim all commission payments before the expiry date of the Agent Agreement.
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Section 11 - International Education Agent Remuneration

(51) All Agent commission invoices will be processed and paid after the study period census date.

(52) All commission invoices are to be sent to and will be processed by the UOWGE Global Recruitment Administrator. 

(53) Before a commission payment can be made, the following information must be provided on the Agent invoice:

  1. Student Name and Student ID;
  2. Course name and relevant study period; and
  3. Complete and current banking details which are consistent with the Agent Agreement to avoid payment delays. If the invoice is a tax invoice, it must contain the Australian Business Number (ABN) of the Agent and show the amount of GST payable (where applicable).

(54) Commission payments are only payable on the fully paid tuition fees.

(55) In cases where the students enrol for only a part of the program the commission will be paid based on the number of units/subjects enrolled by the student.

(56) The Agent Liaison Officer will inform all approved Agents of any change in the physical address, telephone number, facsimile number or electronic mail address of UOW or UOWCA, within five working days of such change.

(57) UOWGE does not accept referral students or encourages referral commissions from prospective Agents.

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Section 12 - Complaints Handling

(58) Any complaint made by a student of UOW and UOWCA, received via the UOW Grievance Policy and Procedure for Investigating Grievances will be investigated thoroughly.  Likewise, any matter that becomes known and that relates to a suspected serious breach regarding the behaviour and practices of an authorised Agent will be investigated thoroughly. In either case the following steps will be implemented:

  1. Where there are serious grounds for concern, the Director Global Student Recruitment Partnerships or nominated delegate will send an email to the Agent via, outlining the specific nature of and the grounds for the concern; the implications of failing to meet the Agent Agreement, and requesting the Agent to respond within 2 weeks from the date of email receipt.
  2. Upon receipt of a response from the Agent, the Director Global Student Recruitment Partnerships or a nominated delegate will evaluate the Agent’s response to the complaint, taking into consideration the Agent’s performance history.
  3. The Director Global Student Recruitment Partnerships or a nominated delegate will, within 2 weeks from the receipt of the Agent’s response, email the Agent via with the outcome of the investigation, which may include:
    1. continuing the Agent's appointment;
    2. maintaining the Agent's appointment subject to certain conditions;
    3. suspending the Agent’s contract and requiring that re-appointment be subject to training and the Agent complying with specifically defined obligations; or
    4. terminating the Agent's appointment immediately.

(59) The outcome of the formal investigation will be recorded in the UOWGE Agent profile and in relevant UOW systems; and will be reported to the UOW Academic Quality Division, by the Global Agent Liaison Officer.

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Section 13 - Roles and Responsibilities

(60) International Education Agents are responsible for:

  1. promoting the UOW and UOWCA to prospective students;
  2. recruiting genuine students to the UOW and UOWCA;
  3. complying with the terms and condition of their individual agency agreement; and
  4. maintaining understanding and compliance with this Policy.

(61) UOWGE is responsible for:

  1. entering into Agency Agreements that are on terms consistent with this Policy;
  2. managing the Agent relationship on behalf of UOW and UOWCA;
  3. managing the Agent selection, monitoring, and review process;
  4. maintaining communications with the Agent network;
  5. maintaining the Agent database and online listing;
  6. distributing appropriate promotional material to Agents;
  7. providing adequate training to Agents;
  8. Coordinating global Education Agent engagement; and
  9. Undertaking Agent performance monitoring and reviews and reporting annually to the University Internationalisation Committee and University Education Committee.

(62) UOW Admissions and Compliance are responsible for:

  1. Providing monthly data on future student academic quality of applications;
  2. Quarterly data on visa refusals and student withdrawals; and
  3. Communication with UOWGE on any arising issues with student quality or any feedback on quality issues with the Agent.

(63) Strategic Marketing and Communications Division is responsible for:

  1. developing promotional material appropriate for source markets in conjunction with UOWGE.
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Section 14 - Definitions

Word/Term Definition (with examples if required)
Addendum A contract addendum is an agreed-upon addition signed by all parties to the original contract. It details the specific terms, clauses, sections, and definitions to be changed in the original contract but otherwise leaves it in full force and effect.
Agent A person or organisation approved by UOW/UOWCA with authority to promote its programs and services to students or prospective students within agreed terms.
Agent Agreement Agreement between UOW/UOWCA and the Agent, including the Schedules.
Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE)
A document that confirms the enrolment status of a student.
CRICOS           Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students.
ESOS Act Education Services for Overseas Students Act 2000 of the Commonwealth of Australia.
ESOS Regulations Regulations made according to the Education Services for Overseas Students Act 2000 of the Commonwealth of Australia.
International Student A person who holds an Australian Student Visa and is an 'Overseas Student' as defined by the ESOS Act
Non Genuine Student A student visa holder may be considered a non genuine student by the Australian Government Department of Home Affairs (DHA) if it appears that their primary intention is not, or not likely to be, to undertake study.
The National Code National Code of Practice for Providers of Education and Training to Overseas Students 2018
PRISMS Provider Registration and International Student Management System. Provides Australian education providers with the Confirmation of Enrolment (COE) facilities required for compliance with the ESOS Act.
Prospective Student A person who intends to become, or who has taken any steps towards becoming, an 'overseas student' or 'intending overseas student' as defined by the ESOS Act.
Student systems UOW’s student Customer Relationship Management system (CRM) and website.
Territory The geographical location in which the Agent operates. An Agent’s Territory is identified in the Agent Agreement Representative Schedule.
University of Wollongong Global Enterprises (UOWGE) UOWGE is a subsidiary group of the University of Wollongong. UOWGE manages global student recruitment and its related functions for UOW and UOWCA.