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“STEAM Power: Putting the Arts into STEM"

“STEAM Power: Putting the Arts into STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics)”.

The University of Auckland’s Dean of Arts, Professor Robert Greenberg, is taking the positive message of the benefits of studying Arts on a lecture tour overseas.

Professor Greenberg will present at two Alumni and Friends Receptions in San Francisco and London next month under the theme; “STEAM Power: Putting the Arts into STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics)”.

In San Francisco, he will be joined by the New Zealand Consul-General Leon Grice. The pair will talk about the value of the Arts and the role it can play in technology. They will explore this trend focusing on the shining role our Film, Television and Media Studies disciplinary areas play internationally as New Zealand’s leading research centre in this field. He will highlight the contribution alumni, students and staff, such as award-winning filmmaker and 2014 Young Alumna of the Year award winner Roseanne Liang, make to this industry.

“My talk is on the value of the BA/Liberal Arts degree, and how a degree in the Arts disciplines prepares students for jobs of the future.

“Technology leaders have repeatedly praised the skill sets developed when studying for an Arts degree and are increasingly choosing to hire Arts graduates. Notably, Apple co-founder Steve Jobs said: ‘Technology alone is not enough. It’s technology married with liberal arts, married with the humanities, that yields us the result that makes our hearts sing’.”

In London, Professor Greenberg will be joined by Tom Mockridge, Chief Executive Officer for Virgin Media.

Tom is a University of Auckland Arts graduate who has had a successful and fascinating media career in print and broadcasting. He was appointed Chief Executive Officer of Virgin Media in June 2013 following the company's acquisition by Liberty Global. His appointment came on the back of a 22-year career at News Corporation where he held a series of senior roles. Tom started as a journalist in his native New Zealand before moving to Australia where he worked for the Sydney Morning Herald before becoming an adviser to Prime Minister Paul Keating.

And in a short clip that will be presented at the event, television journalist Carol Hirschfeld will discuss the skills and experience she gained while studying for a Bachelor of Arts in English, Art History and Indonesian at the University.

Professor Greenberg’s lectures coincide with the recent release of the 2014/15 QS World University Rankings that ranks the University’s Faculty of Arts the top place to study arts in New Zealand.

“I am delighted and very proud to announce the faculty’s rankings in the recently released 2014/15 QS World University Rankings by Faculty. We have been placed at number 35 in the world for arts and humanities, while our social sciences were ranked at number 30. These rankings further reinforce our standing as New Zealand’s leading arts faculty.”

The University‘s ranking is out of the 399 universities surveyed worldwide. It puts us ahead of the arts and humanities faculties of Victoria University at 60, the University of Otago at 85, the University of Canterbury at 220 and the University of Waikato at 244.

Professor Greenberg will emphasise the versatility the BA can give students in their careers.

“Thirty-four of the FTSE 100 CEOs have an Arts degree. In this talk I will explore this trend and suggest that the Arts graduates are the ones best equipped to take on the jobs of the future.”

The San Francisco Alumni and Friends Reception is on October 2 at The Fairmont, while the London event is at The Chemistry Centre on October 6.

Please register online by Thursday 25 September at


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