The federal government's new population policy has returned equal measures of approval and disappointment in Wagga.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced on Wednesday intentions to cap national migration at 160,000 over the next four years. The decision will translate to 30,000 fewer new arrivals. But, more will be settled in the regions.
"If it encourages a higher percentage of migrants to rural and regional places, then that's a positive for the city and I'm happy to hear it," said Wagga mayor Greg Conkey.
"But I'm disappointed the number has been cut. We are a rich country, and the way I see it is there's no reason why those numbers couldn't be kept up."
There will also be further incentives for international students to join regional campuses. Scholarships of up to $15,000 will be made available for overseas students to study outside the cities.
Charles Sturt University Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Heather Cavanagh, welcomed the move but noted the need to improve regional infrastructure in the same timeframe.
"The biggest challenge and barrier we hear from students is the cost of moving regionally. They fly into either Sydney or Melbourne, and they have to take another flight or catch a train to the regions, and that means additional costs."
On average, 350,000 international students are enrolled in Australian institutions each year. Professor Cavanagh estimates that less than five per cent would currently be studying in the regions.
"Between 10 and 15 per cent of the new students would be ideal. We're never going to be able to shift the vast majority from metropolitan cities, but international students are our second largest export and they provide major contributions to small towns."
It is also a measure that has been welcomed by the mayor.
"We have the largest CSU campus within the network, we would expect this would mean we're to pick up quite a few more students," said Cr Conkey.
"These people will be ambassadors for our city when they return home, and we would like them to be able to share their skills, knowledge and culture with us for as long as they're with us."
International students who choose to study regionally may also be given an additional year in the country once they have completed their studies.
"In some cases, no, there are not enough jobs, but the increase to students over the next five years will be gradual. In that time, the government has the opportunity to continue to invest in the jobs sector," said Professor Cavanagh.