Grampians Tourism has teamed up with OutBeyond in a new initiative to grow visitation to the region.
OutBeyond's Beyond Melbourne Ambassadors Project is designed to bring hundreds of international students studying in Melbourne universities to the region to participate in outdoor, nature-based, cultural explorations.
With over 227,000 international students studying in Victoria, the project also supported from Study Melbourne, recognizes the importance of implementing new and innovative projects in regional Victoria to both enhance International student welfare and to boost the cultural, economic and social impact within the community.
Grampians Tourism chief executive Marc Sleeman said international visitors to the region was a key area of target for the organisation.
"International school students studying in Australia provide a really good opportunity to engage and showcase the region," he said.
"We're aiming to train these students to be advocates for our destination.
"We're hoping when the students go back to Melbourne they are the experts in the Grampians region and share their knowledge."
Mr Sleeman said the project could open the opportunity for employment or vacation work.
"Our vision is to also pitch to the students to come and work during the school holiday break," he said.
"With long-term view to re-locate to regional Victoria when they have finished their studying.
"There is a really important component of the project which will look at the livability of the region as well."
Mr Sleeman said Grampians Tourism was experiencing "great success" in driving demand for the destination.
"We also need to focus on attracting residents and skilled labour which is going to provide a really good visitor experience," he said.
"That will help us deliver on our brand promise."
In 2020, the Beyond Melbourne Ambassadors Project will provide an opportunity for more than 100 international and domestic students to plan and participate in cultural explorations across regional Victoria.
The Grampians is the first of the regional Victorian destinations which aims to boost student confidence, develop networks, provide cultural exchange experience through overnight visitation, and promote the development of a number of key employability skills such as leadership, communication, creativity and collaboration.
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