MAINZ students in Auckland are outraged that parent organisation Southern Institute of Technology is pleading poverty regarding programme closures despite SIT having estimated holdings of at least $35 million in the bank.
Upset students learned first-hand from the media about the closure of its Bachelor of Audio and Production Engineering degree. On Wednesday, Head of Faculty Hamish Small apologised to students for SIT’s mishandling of the issue and said closing the Audio department was purely a fiscal measure.
He also faced criticism for the moving of the MAINZ campus away from the CBD to a yet unspecified location rumoured to be in South Auckland. Students said this would continue to create disruption as clearly those in Invercargill had no knowledge of the difficulties of traversing Auckland traffic.
Many students said they were now experiencing anxiety and stress given the uncertainty of the future and intended career paths. It is understood SIT have been in talks with an Australian owned Private Training Enterprise in the Auckland CBD to take on students from the Audio department.
Small told students SIT would make up the difference of student fees which are estimated at $3K more per year. This incensed students further who questioned where these funds were coming from given SIT stated there were not funds to keep the Audio degree running.
SIT also offered to relocate students to its main campus in Invercargill but many students commented the networks and jobs were located in Auckland and had no desire to travel to the deep south.
TEU Members at MAINZ are saddened and disappointed that in the two year tenure under SIT the MAINZ faculty has undergone a period of great upheaval with major redundancies earlier this year and now a second review will see further staff cuts as Christmas approaches.
TEU organiser Jane Adams says that there are a number of aspects of the process that have been very badly managed by SIT, in particular communication with staff members and MAINZ students.
MAINZ audio luminary alumni include award winning and Grammy nominated producers and engineers such as Jordan Stone (Wilco, Neil Finn), Lance Powell (Wilco, Mali Music, Miguel), Josh Fountain (Benee, Leisure, MAALA) Aaron Short (The Naked and Famous), Nick Campbell (Midnight Youth), and Joel Little (Lorde, Broods, Kids of 88).
MAINZ graduates dominate in the creative business industry. They are a strong force in the local and international industry performing, operating businesses, managing recording studios, broadcast houses, film studios, arenas, local clubs, project studios, and freelancing.
Michael Gilchrist, Te Tumu Whakarae TEU President 027 899 4256
Jane Adams, TEU organiser 027 438 7254