- New Colombo Plan
Unique study and internship experiences in Japan and Taiwan opened the door to outstanding opportunities in the medtech industry for 2019 New Colombo Plan scholar Jadyn D’Mello, which he says would have been unlikely without the support offered by the program.
“The NCP program stood out to me because unlike traditional exchanges, it encourages and facilitates deeper people-to-people connections and cultural understanding through language training and internships, as well as university study,” said Jadyn. “You get to experience a new culture, new language, build new friendships and connections, and all whilst representing Australia and your home university.”
Jadyn, a Monash University student pursuing a double degree in Mechanical Engineering and Biomedical Science, wants to make a difference in medical and health-related areas and reduce the impact of common disabilities and diseases on communities with low socioeconomic status. He selected Nagoya University for his NCP studies, believing that Japan, with its ageing population and heightened motivation to invest in healthcare technology and solutions, would be the perfect place to learn more about the medtech industry.
“A highlight was my time in Nagoya and my exchange at Nagoya University. I met so many amazing people from all around the world, and made what I’m sure will become lifelong friendships and connections. My network expanded in Japan where I gradually solidified professional relationships with my professors. Due to Nagoya’s vicinity to major engineering companies and very central location, I also had access to amazing professors and even Nobel Prize winners.”
Jadyn also completed an internship with robotics company, GeStream, outside of Taipei, Taiwan where he designed a 3D-printed prosthetic device for children with hand deformities and amputations.
“It was such an amazing feeling to finally complete this project after months of hard work. Being able to intern in Taiwan and make so many connections in the medical device industry is something I would have probably never been able to achieve without the NCP.
“My time in Taiwan enabled me to connect with many of the local and indigenous Taiwanese people, and learn about their history and traditions. I was also able to connect with Taipei government officials and representatives from the Chamber of Commerce. After attending the Bio-Asia Taiwan expo in Taipei, I made a myriad of connections with employees and directors of companies in the medical technology industry, which have already proved to be useful.”
In his downtime, Jadyn has found time to explore the region, visiting local villages and cities across Japan, Taiwan, Vietnam and the Philippines.
“The local people were so welcoming, particularly in the smaller towns, since they don’t often see many tourists, and they were fascinated to learn about my home and culture. It may seem really hard to make friends, but even just saying hello to someone each day can make all the difference. Sometimes you will be the one that has to take the leap to form that friendship, and you are just one hello away from what could be a lifetime friendship.”
Jadyn has further internships planned to develop more industry experience when he is able to return to the region.
“When people hear about the NCP program, they realise the importance and prestige it holds on the world stage. The NCP program for me has been eye-opening, more than anything else. It’s unveiled how easy it is to meet people and form networks abroad.”
Photo: Jadyn D'Mello at the Sensō-ji temple in Asakusa, Tokyo
Photo credit: Ruslan Tursunaliev