The American Australian Association (AAA) recently celebrated its 65th anniversary of fostering cooperation and partnership between the United States and Australia. The association was founded in 1948 by Sir Keith Murdoch. It has worked with numerous universities, corporations, and government programs to promote collaboration between the two countries on advancing their shared values and goals.
The AAA hosts social and cultural events throughout the year which promote the sharing of both U.S. and Australian customs. It also runs a business council and a variety of corporate programs which help to educate its partners in the trade environment of the two countries. Its resources support the economic relationship between American and Australian corporations through open forums, strategic alliances, and educational trade seminars in a variety of fields.
Another facet of the AAA’s work is its promotion of academic scholarship and research. It played an integral role in founding the United States Studies Center at the University of Sydney—an academic partner of the East West Center—which focuses on policy, economic, and cultural studies regarding the two regions. The AAA announced the launch of the new Perth USAsia Center based in the University of Western Australia in November 2012, which seeks to strengthen ties between the United States, Australia, and the rest of Asia.
Along with its research centers, the American Australian Association also provides numerous fellowships for increased exchange of American and Australian students. Its education fund was founded in 2002 and has already provided $4 million in programs within various fields of study, contributing to the rising trend of Australian students studying abroad in the U.S (see graph below). In a recent article, American Ambassador to Australia Jeffrey L. Bleich praised the fund and stated:
“These fellows have been performing cutting-edge research on cancer, climate change, extending human life, improving health and protecting our planet. Wherever they work they reflect the view that our daily efforts must be devoted to something greater—to make the world better, more beautiful and more closely connected”.
For more information on United States-Australia student exchange visit the Asia Matters for America data pages here.