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Education Malaysia Australia (EMA) or previously known as Malaysian Student Department Australia (MSDA) was established on 6 April 1962 and operating in a rented office located at Railway Square, Sydney CBD. The office was opened just after 6 years Malaysian government or the Federation of Malaya, established its Commission office in Canberra on 20 November 1956. The Commission in Canberra became High Commission when the Federation of Malaya formally became independent on 31 August 1957.

Consulate of Malaysia Sydney's Building


However, on 1 July 1971, the operation of MSDA was moved to 67 Victoria Road Bellevue Hill NSW 2023, a 3-storey residential bungalow, following the purchase of the property by the Malaysian Government on 25 February 1971. The purchase price via auction was AUD150,000.00 and the acquisition process completed on 30 April 1971. It was later being renovated with a cost around AUD25,000.00.


First Owner of the Property (67 Victoria Road):


  • The first owner of the property was Mr Maurice Henry Newstead (born 1862). He died in Melbourne in 1935 at the age of 73. His wife predeceased him, and he was survived by four sons and a daughter. 

  • Mr M.H. Newstead only stayed at the house for about 19 months from 23 January 1923 to 27 August 1924, before selling it off to Mr Cecil Lewis Davis.

  • Mr M.H. Newstead was a vice-president of the Overseas League, and a Justice of the Peace for New South Wales and for Victoria. Before his retirement from business in 1933, Mr. Newstead was a director of several companies, including the Ocean Accident and Guarantee Co., Ltd., and was chairman of directors of the New Langi Logan Gold Mining Co.

  • He carried on business as a merchant in Oxford-street, Sydney for many years and he was interested in the development of the copra trade with the Pacific Islands. 

Early Days of MSDA


Since independence, the Malaysian Government through various agencies such as MARA, JPA and Ministry of Education been providing scholarships to Malaysian students to study abroad, including to Australia.


The establishment of MSDA in Sydney in 1962 was aimed to assist all those students, including self-sponsored students to settle down quickly in Australia. MSDA also acts as a bridge between the students, universities, family members in Malaysia and the sponsors. Besides that, some of the Malaysian students in Australia had received Colombo Plan Scholarships, which was introduced by the Australian Government in the early 1950s, to promote and strengthen its relationship with the Asian countries. According to the record of Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Australia, "the most successful national group was Malayan, with a 93% pass rate".


Since the 1950s, a Malaysia - Australia education network has evolved drastically and soon after the Malaya independence, around 1,500 Malayan students were studying in Australian universities and colleges and that, after more than 60 years later in 2018, there were over 30,000 international student enrolments from Malaysia in Australian education institutions.  Following a large number of Malaysian students in Australia, MSDA has expanded and opened its branch office in Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth. However, due to the Asian financial crisis in 1998, MSDA had to cease its operation in Perth and Adelaide.

MSDA Offices 


1. Sydney, New South Wales (Headquarters)   - 1962 – present

2. Melbourne, Victoria                                         - 1978 – 2005

3. Perth, Western Australia                                - 1978 – 1998 (closed) and reopened again in 2010 until today.

4. Adelaide, South Australia                               - 1982 – 1998

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