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International Students Under-18

We are here to support you in Australia as you adjust to university life.

Under-18 at Deakin College

About the Program

International students who are under 18 years of age must meet immigration requirements for accommodation, support and general welfare arrangements before a student visa will be granted.

Deakin College’s Under-18 Management Program makes sure you have all the support you need until you turn 18.

As part of the program, you will live in a supported accommodation environment and be assigned a Guardian, who is responsible for your care and wellbeing.

This program helps you to:

  • Live out of home for the first time
  • Adjust to life in Australia
  • Make the most out of your studies
  • Find out about your work opportunities
  • Make new friends and develop your network
  • Participate in activities and clubs on campus and explore Australia.

Am I considered an Under-18 student?

You are considered to be an Under-18 student if you meet one of the below criteria:

  • are under 18 years old when you first arrive in Australia
  • are under 18 years of age when you start studying at Deakin University English Language Institute (DUELI), Deakin College or Deakin University.

Your Accommodation Options

As an international student under 18 years of age, you must either:

  • reside in Australia with a parent, or a person who has custody of you, or a relative aged at least 21, nominated by either your parent or the person having custody of you, or;
  • go into care arrangements – for your accommodation, support and general welfare – i.e. homestay approved by Deakin College.

Residing with a relative

If you have a relative living close to campus, you may choose to live there and nominate your relative as your legal guardian.

This person must be at least 21 years old and have a visa to stay in Australia for the duration of your student visa or until you turn 18.

A relative is defined as a parent or adoptive or step-parent, brother, sister, step-brother, step-sister, grandparent, step-grandparent, aunt, uncle, step-aunt, step-uncle, niece, nephew, step-niece or step-nephew. It does not include a cousin.

Residing in a Homestay

If you choose to stay in a homestay, you’ll be staying close to your campus and living with other students, which makes it easy to make friends as soon as you reach Australia.

While living in a homestay, you’ll have a live-in caretaker in your shared accommodation. They will look out for your welfare and safety throughout the trimester (and during the breaks if you and your parents choose this option), in addition to your Guardian.

Deakin College works with Student Accommodation Services (SAS) and Australian Homestay Network (AHN) which provide homestay arrangements for Under-18 students. You will be required to apply for a homestay directly with SAS or AHN.

Once SAS or AHN has confirmed your homestay, confirmation will be sent to our admissions team.

Once you have booked your ticket to Australia, you must notify your Guardian and homestay provider of your arrival date. Please provide at least 2 weeks notice before your arrival.

Book SAS Homestay

Book AHN Homestay


When you’re starting uni in a new country, you’ll probably have a lot of questions – but it can be hard to know who to turn to.

  • If you’re living with your relative, they will be appointed your legal guardian.
  • If you’re living in a homestay, you will be appointed a guardian from Deakin College or an external guardianship service. We will provide you with a CAAW letter confirming these details, which you will need for your visa application.

Your Guardian will be your main point of contact until you turn 18. They will be in regular contact with both you and your parents. If you need any help or just want someone to talk to, your Guardian is the best person to go to.

You and your Guardian will meet once a fortnight and you can maintain regular contact by phone or email.

You can talk to your Guardian about:

  • Settling into life in Australia and at Deakin
  • Receiving your paperwork, including your Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE) and visa
  • Your visa’s working and study conditions
  • Managing your finances, setting up a bank account and applying for a Tax File Number
  • Applying for a study intermission
  • Applying to stay away from your homestay for one or more nights
  • Dealing with issues around homesickness, stress or study.

Because you’re living away from home, your parents will be able to contact your Guardian at any time to ask questions, receive updates or discuss your wellbeing.

Deakin College Guardianship

Under 18s students who are studying at Melbourne Burwood and choose homestay as an option will be appointed the Deakin College guardian. Your Deakin College guardian is based on campus, making them easy to contact and see.

Deakin College Guardianship costs:

  • A non-refundable fee of $200 for the Deakin College Under-18 Guardianship Services
  • A fee of $8 per day from the beginning of the CAAW period (14 days before the start of the semester) until you turn 18.

External Guardianship Services

Under 18s students who are studying in Geelong and choose homestay as an option must use one of the following External Guardianship Services recommended by Deakin College:

International Student Alliance (ISA)
T: (613) 9663 2887

A & J Student Care Services
T: (613) 9801 2251

Professional Student Care
T: (613) 9318 3009

You must contact the guardianship service to organise your guardian before accepting your offer at Deakin College.

How to Apply

Step 1 – Choose your Accommodation and Guardianship arrangement

Option 1: Stay with a relative

  • Accommodation and guardianship will be provided by your relative

Option 2: Stay with a homestay provider (a guardian will also be required)

  • Your guardianship arrangements will depend on where you will be studying
    • Melbourne Burwood campus:
      Students who are studying at the Melbourne Burwood campus are required to use Deakin College’s own internal guardian. You must also include evidence of your Deakin College guardianship services payment with your acceptance.
    • Geelong campuses:
      Students who are studying at a campus in Geelong are required to use an external guardianship provider. You must include confirmation of guardianship from one of our approved providers with your acceptance.

Step 2 – Complete form

Complete, sign and return the Deakin College Under-18 Management Program Form and with your Deakin College acceptance

Obtaining a CoE and CAAW letter

If you are staying with an approved relative, Deakin College admissions will provide you with a CoE. All other documentation relating to your guardianship is required when you apply for a student visa. 

If you’re staying in a homestay with an external guardian, a confirmation email from the guardianship company and a copy of the homestay application must be provided to Deakin College admissions before an eCoE and Confirmation of Appropriate Accommodation and Welfare (CAAW) letter can be provided.

Additional Information

Airport Pick-up

The airport pickup service is compulsory and free for all our new students who are under 18.

Please forward your flight details to your homestay provider and they will arrange your airport pick up service for you. Please note the homestay provider requires a minimum of 5 business days’ notice prior to a student’s arrival.

Key Services

At Deakin, you can access a range of services that can support your education, career, health and wellbeing. This includes everything from language and learning services to counselling.

Payment and Refunds

Along with the payments you make during your application, you’ll need to pay an Application and Guardianship fee to be able to take part in the program. Once you submit your application, we’ll send you an invoice requesting payment of this fee.

If you decide you don’t want to be part of the program, you can apply for a refund of your fees (excluding the non-refundable components). We’ll assess if you’re eligible for a full or partial refund if you meet one or more of the following conditions:

  • If you are refused a student visa;
  • If you change to a different approved care arrangement; or
  • If you change education providers.
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