Australian Office

Shu-Fang Vivienne Wu


This week, ‘40 years, 40 stories’ brings you Shu-Fang Vivienne Wu, President of the Taipei University of Nursing and Health Sciences (NTUNHS) and a PhD graduate from Australia’s QUT.  Through her academic leadership, Vivienne has been an exemplar in facilitating higher education and VET cooperation between Australia and Taiwan, whether it be in promoting Australia-Taiwan dual degree programs or encouraging transnational research collaboration.  Written in her own words, Vivienne shares her fond memories of Australia and how she’s dedicated her professional career to nurturing young talent, encouraging international perspectives and providing students the skills to be competitive in the changing global employment market.  Here is her story:


As a PhD graduate of the Queensland University of Technology (QUT), I view Australia as my home away from home. Between 2002 and 2006, my years at QUT have formed some of my fondest memories and most precious experiences. I can still remember the first day I stepped on campus and the sense of comfort I felt, especially with the top-notch facilities and international academic environment. Having outstanding students from all around the world as classmates made my years studying there fulfilling, exciting and of course, challenging. Apart from my studies, I also visited Australia’s world-class sites and scenery - natural scenic areas and geological landscape that are very different from Taiwan. Unique species and marsupials, such as kangaroos and koalas, vast land which communicates a sense of freedom, and the beauty of flocks of sheep and herds of cattle were all memorable things that made Australia one of the most unforgettable places in the world for me. To this day, I still always have the urge to go back there.

Global healthcare talent shortages and the globalization of the health and medical industry have led to the need to build a workforce which transcends nationality and cultures, and instead focus on professionalism and international experiences. Therefore, enhancing the health professional education curriculum to put it on a par with those offered worldwide, cultivate our students’ professional skills and raise its international competitiveness, has long been one of the educational goals of my university - the Taipei University of Nursing and Health Sciences (NTUNHS). Our international development guidelines are based on the concept of ‘Laying down a Global Footprint, Nurturing Talents for Global Services’. Through diverse course designs and a global learning environment, all departments at NTUNHS offer dual degrees and overseas internship opportunities through collaborative courses with our partner universities and institutions. These efforts are essential to strengthen our students’ professional skills to allow them to acquire international professional certification as well as recognition from industry.

Higher and vocational education in Australia attach great importance to combining well-rounded talents with academic knowledge and practical skill sets. Australia is known for developing skilled workforces that can fulfil the needs of industry - this allows Australian students to enjoy a decisive and competitive advantage when it comes to employment, both at home and abroad. NTUNHS therefore has successfully established partnerships with Australian universities and academic institutes, including the QUT, the University of Queensland, Deakin University and the William Angliss Institute, in offering dual degrees in nursing, asset management, exercise and sport science, hospital management, business management and tourism management. In addition, we also work together with Kirana Colleges, Box Hill Institute and TAFE Queensland to offer Taiwan-Australia International Certificate Courses in healthcare, sports coaching as well as travel and tourism management. Through these arrangements, we provide students at NTUHNS a channel to simultaneously learn professional knowledge and practical skills required both in Taiwan’s and Australia’s industries. Moreover, this allows students with dual degrees, and those who have obtained professional practice certificates recognized by both Taiwan and Australia, to enjoy greater international competitiveness in the global jobs market.

Throughout my time here at NTUNHS, whether as department chair, dean of research and development, vice president, or president, I have been actively promoting diverse academic cooperation between my university and those in Australia from promoting dual degree programs and Taiwan-Australia International Certificate Courses, to conducting transnational research collaboration. I have also encouraged professors from all departments to participate in international cooperation and conduct joint courses. Last but not least, by proactively providing teaching and research resources as well as study abroad scholarships and transnational research grants, I hope to further facilitate the effective implementation of and continue to achieve concrete progress in our various Taiwan-Australia cooperation projects.