News 2/5 – Big Budget Hints. Drama at Canterbury. Imagine Cup.

May 2nd 2012 at 8:44am, By Dave Guerin

Congrats to the TEU’s comms supremo Stephen Day, who achieved fourth in the Rotorua marathon at the weekend, in his first attempt at that distance.

Policy, Management & People

  1. Big Budget Hints John Key gave a pretty mild speech covering loans and other issues yesterday, but follow-up comments to reporters suggested that the 10% repayment rate would go up and that allowances would also be cut (RNZ, 3 News, Fairfax, NZ Herald, NZN, NZN, NewstalkZB, One News, Whale Oil, NZN, NZ Herald, Fairfax, Kiwiblog) . NZUSA put out releases about the loans and allowances changes, and student politician Dave Crampton wrote a blog post. The Greens’ Holly Walker also put out a release about allowances.
  2. Drama at Canterbury CPIT and Canterbury discussed transferring Canterbury’s theatre and film studies department to CPIT. CPIT refused in the end but staff and the TEU are upset.
  3. Debt Collection SIT staff are visiting classes to chase up students who haven’t paid their fees.
  4. $216m That’s how much will be spent on refurbishing Auckland’s engineering faculty.
  5. Where Have the Teachers Gone? The TEU’s Sandra Grey has a cheeky media release trying to use Quarterly Employment Survey stats to show a 4,000 drop over the last year in education and training employees. The data isn’t reliable at the industry level – it also shows a drop from 126K to 104K in the last quarter…
  6. Uni Rankings The NZ Herald calls for quality not quantity over university enrolments, picking up on Stuart McCutcheon’s op-ed. Canterbury’s Eric Crampton also commented.
  7. Extras: Massey has appointed Andy Martin to promote applied learning (in a fairly impenetrable media release); Otago Uni working hard to attract top students .

Research & Innovation

  1. Commercialisation Auckland gave out commercialisation medals to some top performers to recognise their work. Nice idea.
  2. Dolphins A Massey PhD student is studying dolphins in the Sounds.
  3. Extras: Massey’s Barry McDonald has helped develop a writing assessment tool; Victoria/Auckland/Otago research on hospital productivity; Auckland’s Elizabeth Broadbent on asthma texting research; more on bogan PhD.

Public Issues

  1. Quake Lincoln’s Ann Brower on the Christchurch buildings that fell on the bus she was in.
  2. Alcohol Medical students have supported the alcohol purchase age going up. Act on Campus disagree.
  3. Refugees AUT’s Prof Max Abbott on refugees (he’s having a bust couple of weeks).
  4. Extras: AUT”s Alan Cocker on online news reading; Victoria’s David Lawrence on Shakespeare; Chris Trotter cites Nigel Roberts and Bryce Edwards; Auckland’s Natalie Walker on candy cigarettes and Prof David Williams on Ngati Whatua o Orakei settlement; Victoria’s John Overton on business focus of aid; Auckland’s Mike Rann to give a seminar on leadership in policy making; Victoria’s Chris Marshall on Jesus advertising; Waikato’s Prof David Lowe scoffs at flood risk; Auckland’s Trish Wouldes on drug users’ babies.


  1. Student Friendly An op-ed by ex-Salient co-editor on Wellington’s friendliness to students.
  2. Extras: Whitireia theatre production; Invercargill panel beater was MITO’s top apprentice; WITT singer; Waiariki golfer.


  1. Imagine Cup Two AUT students and an Auckland student won the Imagine Cup, although Auckland chose to focus on their domination of the finals (their teams were 2, 3 and 4). Other coverage came from Microsoft, ComputerWorld, iStart, NBR and techday. Anyway, the students’ idea is designed for blind people and goes like this: “take a photo of your surroundings and hear your phone describe it to you”.
  2. NZ Music Month…will kick off at CPIT this year.
  3. Extras: Waikato’s Kingitanga Day plans; Massey gets art award; Aoraki students survey Ashburton over art gallery/museum.

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