Sreng's scholarship story: How an opportunity to study in Australia has shaped Sreng's career

IDP Education
30 June 2022

With a career at IDP spanning over two decades, Sreng Mao, Country Director for IDP Cambodia, understands what it takes to stay ahead of the constantly evolving international education landscape  

Sreng joined IDP in 2000 as a program manager before becoming Cambodia Office Manager and then Country Director.  

During this time, he has led the growth of IDP Cambodia, including expanding our country-leading English language schools, ACE, which now supports over 80,000 students every year. 

To achieve this success, Sreng has been committed to building his skills and learning new ways of doing things. In 2007, IDP supported Sreng to take a year away from his work to complete his master’s degree in Australia - an opportunity he wouldn’t have been able to take without a scholarship.   

“Like many people, I wouldn’t have been able to pursue my global study dream without the support of a scholarship. I was fortunate to receive a scholarship from the Australian Government to undertake my master’sdegree at Carnegie Mellon University – Australia campus,” Sreng said.  

“I was also offered another scholarship to Europe at that time but choosing Australia and getting a degree from Carnegie Mellon was a good decision.   

“The scholarship, the program I studied, and the exposure I got while in Australia, continue to shape the way I perceive, plan, operate and approach things.  It helped to ensure I continue to lead boldly with care, look forward, think innovatively and maintain an open, balanced view.” 

When Sreng returned from his intense year of study, he put his new learnings straight to work, helping the IDP Cambodia team build a diverse, connected culture to drive success, closer relationships with stakeholders and business growth. 

“Cambodia’s operation is unique in its nature. Unlike other IDP countries, our leading English language teaching schools account for 80% of our operation,” Sreng said. 

“With our strong alumni engagement strategy, innovation, active corporate responsibility program and good relationship with our clients and industry stakeholders, IDP Cambodia creates an ecosystem for its business growth. It is both challenging and rewarding to manage a team of around 500 staff of more than 20 nationalities, who all work together to support more than 80,000 students.” 

Sreng said he’s proud to work for an organisation that helps students to access scholarships that will ensure they can fulfil their global study dreams.  

“Unfortunately, not everyone can study abroad, but scholarships open doors to many international students, like me, to achieve global success. They’re also great for universities, as scholarships are a demonstration of a student’s academic and professional competency. This means they accept the most talented people.  

“Our student placement counsellors are very knowledgeable when it comes to the range of scholarships available and help guide students and parents on the options that best meet their needs. If a student is eligible for a partial or full scholarship, our counsellors will support them to access it so, just like me, they can realise their dreams.” 

“I am delighted that IDP’s digital innovation is now enabling even more students to access this scholarship information earlier in their international education journey,” he said.  

 Visit the IDP website to discover scholarship opportunities with universities around the world.