Education Policy | Post Primary | Preschool | Primary | Tertiary | Search


Merger Won't Solve Student Union Problems

The proposed merger of the New Zealand University Students’ Association (NZUSA) and the Aotearoa Tertiary Students’ Association (ATSA), won’t solve the fundamental problems suffered by the two organisations, Prebble’s Rebels president Clint Heine said today.

"The two organisations are unrepresentative, unaccountable and irrelevant to the vast majority of tertiary students," Mr Heine said.

"NZUSA and ATSA are unrepresentative because they claim to speak on behalf of students, yet individual students aren’t members. They’re unaccountable because compulsory membership means students must pay millions to NZUSA and ATSA whether they like it or not, regardless of what the organisations say or how they perform. The organisations are irrelevant - most students don’t even know of their existence. Students are more concerned with issues like quality of teaching than the far-left political barrows pushed by the student politicians who claim to represent students’ interests."

Mr Heine said that the two student organisations are now locked in competition for members and a merger will not please the polytechnic associations.

"For a long time NZUSA has been seen as increasingly radical and political. Three university associations are now members of ATSA (formerly APSU) - the University of Canterbury Student Association (a founding member of NZUSA) recently left because it was worried about the radical stance of NZUSA. Canterbury won’t be thrilled at the prospect of being thrown back in with NZUSA. In addition, ATSA risks being overshadowed by the wealthier university associations and having its issues hijacked by the radicals running NZUSA. The planned merger is actually a survival bid by NZUSA."

"Neither organisation is willing to confront the main problem of student associations. Both organisations are based on compulsory membership – it delivers millions of dollars into association coffers, but makes associations illegitimate."

"Until associations move to voluntary membership and treat students with respect, they will continue to be captured by radicals and be of little relevance to the bulk of students," Mr Heine said.

"It is somewhat ironic that membership of these two organisations is voluntary for student associations," concluded Mr Heine.


For more information, contact:
Clint Heine (+64) (021) 122 8544

© Scoop Media

Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines


Howard Davis Review: From Free Press to Fancy Dress - Spielberg's The Post

Stephen Spielberg's The Post is an opportune newsroom drama in which a corrupt Republican president wages war against the "liberal media," as its plucky proprietor risks economic and legal ruin to bring the Pentagon Papers to public light. Its true protagonist is publisher Katharine Graham, a stringently diplomatic businesswoman, reluctantly compelled to take an overtly political stance in the interests of democracy and freedom of the press. More>>

Howard Davis Review: The Black Dog of Empire - Joe Wright's Darkest Hour'

On the eve of England's contorted efforts to negotiate its ignominious retreat from Europe and the chaotic spectacle of the Tory party ratifying its undignified departure from a union originally designed to prevent another World War, there has been a renewed appetite for movies about 1940. More>>

Howard Davis Review: Anger Begets Anger - Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

For fans of what Ricky Gervais termed "number movies" (Seven Samurai, The Magnificent Seven, Ocean's 11, Se7en), Martin McDonagh's latest offering will be a welcome addition to the roster. The Irish playwright turned screenwriter and director has produced another quirky and darkly comic tragedy that evolves around the futility of anger and grief, retribution and revenge. More>>

Howard Davis: Sexting in George Dawe's Genevieve - Part I

Te Papa's permanent collection includes an enormous oil painting by the English artist George Dawe called Genevieve (from by a poem by S.T. Coleridge entitled 'Love') that was prominently featured in the 2013 exhibition Angels & Aristocrats. Compare the massive immensity of the bard's gorgeously gilded harp with the stubby metallic handle of the Dark Knight's falchion, both suggestively positioned at crotch-level. Dawe's enormous canvas invokes a whole history of blushing that pivots around a direct connection to sexual arousal. More>>


Ethnomusicology: Malian ‘Desert Blues’ Revolutionaries To Storm WOMAD

Malian band Tinariwen (playing WOMAD NZ in March 2018) are a true musical revolutionaries in every sense. Active since 1982, these nomadic Tuareg or ‘Kel Tamashek’ (speakers of Tamashek) electric guitar legends revolutionised a traditional style to give birth to a new genre often called ‘desert blues’. They also have a history rooted deeply in revolution and fighting for the rights of their nomadic Tamashek speaking culture and people. More>>

Gordon Campbell: Best New Music Of 2017

Any ‘best of list’ has to be an exercise in wishful thinking, given the splintering of everyone’s listening habits... But maybe… it could be time for the re-discovery of the lost art of listening to an entire album, all the way through. Just putting that idea out there. More>>



  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland