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Victoria posts surplus - student enrolments grow

Victoria University continues to go from strength to strength posting a 2002 consolidated surplus of $6.3 million before one-off items, backed up with already high enrolments for 2003.

The Annual Report 2002, tabled in Parliament today, records the University's ongoing financial strength and myriad academic and research achievements.

Vice-Chancellor Professor Stuart McCutcheon said the surplus, which follows a consolidated surplus of $5.3 million in 2001, was the result of higher than expected enrolment numbers and prudent financial management.

"The result is particularly pleasing because an unanticipated increase of $2 million in insurance premiums in the wake of the September 11 events in the United States forced the University to revise its planned surplus down from $4.5 million to $2.5 million. That we were able to absorb those costs and still exceed our original target is testament to the confidence that students and the community place in Victoria and the hard work of our staff."

Last year saw Victoria enrol a record 16,624 students, an increase of 8.8 percent on 2001. That increase is set to continue this year.

"The University is set once again to buck the national trend of decreased domestic enrolments with 2003 enrolments already surpassing the record number of enrolments for 2002. Enrolment numbers on this the first day of lectures, compared to the same day last year, already show an increase in domestic enrolments of 4.5% from 10,787 students in 2002 to 11,274 in 2003," says Professor McCutcheon.

"International student enrolments are also looking positive with an increase of more than 20% on the 883 students enrolled at this time last year. Enrolments will continue to grow steadily over the coming weeks and we fully expect to overtake last year's record increase of 1,338 students by year-end.

"Not all of this will generate the same revenue for the University, as 820 students are enrolled in the part-time Victoria-Police Education Programme, and 142 are enrolled for the Bachelor of Teaching papers which are delivered by the Wellington College Education."

The Annual Report 2002 also showed that the number of Mâori students at Victoria continued to grow with a 16 percent increase to 1,324. The growth in student numbers has seen more people graduating with 4,180 receiving a degree, diploma or certificate in 2002, an increase of 16.7 percent on 2001.

Professor McCutcheon said the University was investing the surplus in facilities for students and staff.

"We continue to upgrade both our information technology services and our physical facilities. There is major construction taking place on the Kelburn campus and also a redevelopment of the downtown campus at Rutherford House."

Note: Victoria University's Annual Report 2002 will be available online from tomorrow at www.vuw.ac.nz/annualreports

Issued by Victoria University of Wellington Public Affairs
For further information please contact Antony.Paltridge@vuw.ac.nz or phone 04 463 5873 or 029 463 5873

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