Fears for UCOL faculty jobs

By Liz Wylie

2 comments
Leeza Boyce
Leeza Boyce

Staff at UCOL Whanganui are concerned two senior faculty jobs may go as part of a proposed restructuring here alongside major changes at the Palmerston North campus.

Tertiary Education Union (TEU) organiser Lawrence O'Halloran said the union had met with UCOL Whanganui staff yesterday and were trying to ascertain what changes are likely to occur.

"As we understand it, there is a proposal to disestablish two positions at the Whanganui campus and staff are understandably concerned about that, as well as for their Palmerston North colleagues," said Mr O'Halloran.

TEU branch president Steven Wharehinga said staff were shocked by the scale of proposed cuts that would see up to 43 jobs go from the Palmerston North campus.

UCOL chief executive Leeza Boyce said the majority of the proposed changes relate to UCOL's Palmerston North campus. "For Whanganui UCOL, the suggestion is to create a designated senior academic function that supports the local academic community with a point of liaison, leadership and connection on academic matters instead of two faculty positions," she said.

"Priority will be given to any affected staff who choose to apply for the new roles that emerge as a result of this change.

"There is also some regrouping of programmes between faculties, and minor job title changes to provide a consistent approach across UCOL's academic structure."

Mrs Boyce said she was consulting with staff over plans to change the way UCOL carries out its work to help students transition into the tertiary sector and ultimately employment.

"The aim is to ensure student success rates and satisfaction levels continue to improve," she said. "While inevitably some jobs would go, new roles would also be created."

Mrs Boyce said that staff feedback on the proposal was being sought over the next few weeks, with final decisions implemented around the end of June to early July.

Whanganui mayor Annette Main was in Auckland yesterday but said she would be meeting with Mrs Boyce and UCOL community stakeholders today.

- Wanganui Chronicle

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