Students turning to tertiary education in face of recession

Posted By TEU on Jan 29, 2009 |

Tertiary Update Volume 12, Number 1

Last week’s report in the New Zealand Herald that, in the face of a recession, the University of Auckland has seen a 12 percent rise in applications for courses across the board makes it even more imperative that tertiary institutions be adequately funded, says TEU transitional co-president, Associate Professor Maureen Montgomery.

“This growth in enrolments follows a long period of disinvestment in public tertiary education and the capping of funding for student enrolments means that institutions will be even further stretched financially to provide students with a quality education,” said Dr Montgomery. “At a time of recession, it makes good sense for students to seek to improve their chances of employment by gaining tertiary qualifications.  At the same time, a more highly skilled workforce will make an important contribution to New Zealand’s recovery from the recession and for the future.”

The Herald reports:

Deputy vice-chancellor Raewyn Dalziel has compared enrolment numbers to unemployment rates over the past decade and says there is a clear correlation between rising unemployment and higher numbers of university students. It is most evident this year.

TEU’s transitional co-president, Tangi Tipene, notes that increased numbers of students trying to improve their skills in a recession is going to coincide with the mini baby boom of young people moving into tertiary education.

“The primary and secondary education sectors have both seen teachers come under significant pressure as this large cohort of students has passed through their schools.  Now it is the turn of teachers in tertiary education, said Ms Tipene.

“We need to invest in tertiary education and especially in staff numbers, staff recruitment, and staff retention if we are going to serve those many new students and the New Zealand economy well.”

Also in Tertiary Update this week

  1. Baby boom about to explode in tertiary education
  2. EFTS caps may be limiting employment opportunities
  3. SIS spying threatens academic freedom
  4. Funding sought for assault on casualisation
  5. Obama’s financial rescue package promises billions for tertiary education
  6. Universities dread China recession
  7. Entrepreneur plans free, global, online university
  8. New Indian higher education regulations would violate GATS
  9. Jobs shrink, swimming pool expands

More international news

More international news can be found on University World News:

TEU Tertiary Update is published weekly on Thursdays and distributed freely to members of the Tertiary Education Union and others. Back issues are available on the website. Direct inquiries should be made to Stephen Day, email:

Thanks to Bitzcelt at Flickr for the image

Thanks to Bitzcelt at Flickr for the image

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