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Agreement Advances Co-operation in Student Service

JOINT MEDIA RELEASE

by

Otago University Students’ Association
and
University of Otago

Agreement Advances Co-operation in Provision of Student Services


The Otago University Students’ Association and the University of Otago today concluded an agreement resolving the longstanding uncertainty surrounding the ownership of the University Union building and the responsibility for its management.

Significant contributions to the cost of the building were made by students in the 1960’s, 70’s and 80’s, in part through OUSA building levies, but no agreement was reached at that time about issues of ownership or management.
The parties have now agreed that each has a half interest in the Union Building, which has a current value of $3.5 million. Agreements have also been reached on a joint venture structure under which the premises will be run, enhancing the ability of the Association and the University to co-operate in provision of services to all students.
OUSA is celebrating formal recognition of student ownership in the building.
“The building was built for the enjoyment and welfare of students and student ownership is fundamental to this,” said OUSA President Ayesha Verrall. “The Agreement guarantees OUSA ongoing space for its offices and activities at the heart of the campus and protects the existing spaces designated for particular student groups”.
The University is also delighted at the resolution which has been reached. Vice Chancellor, Dr Graeme Fogelberg said: “Over the years uncertainty as to rights and responsibilities in respect of the Union building have tended to hamper co-operation between the University and the Association in their overlapping roles of providing for student welfare. With that issue resolved, I look forward to increasing co-operation between the University and OUSA for the benefit of the student body”.
Today’s agreement brings to an end the Court proceedings filed by OUSA in order to clarify of issues of ownership of the Union and other assets. Both parties are pleased to have achieved a resolution without those proceedings requiring a hearing.

For Further comment:

Ayesha Verrall Dr Graeme Fogelberg
President Vice-Chancellor
Otago University Students' Association University of Otago
Phone 03 479-5332 Phone 03 479-8253
Cell 021 345 368

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