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Victoria scores a hat trick

MEDIA RELEASE 3 March 2004

Victoria scores a hat trick

Victoria University is on a roll, achieving a third successive year of record enrolments with student numbers topping the 18,000 mark for the first time.

Victoria's Annual Report 2003, released today, also shows the University achieved a consolidated surplus for University operations, before one-off items, of $7.6 million. The total surplus was more than twice that figure due to new financial standards that require the assets and income from two University trusts to be consolidated into its accounts for the first time.

In 2003, total student numbers increased by 9.2 percent to 18,158, compared to the year before while the number of Ministry of Education-funded equivalent fulltime students (EFTS) increased by 8.5 percent to 14,286.

The University's student population continues to become more diverse with the number of international students rising 32 percent to 2,580 while the number of Mâori students rose 11.5 percent to 1,476 and the number of Pacific students rose 16.9 percent to 700. The number of domestic students rose 6 percent to 15,578.

Vice-Chancellor Professor Stuart McCutcheon said 2003 was a year of spectacular achievements, with more to come in 2004.

"While the growth in enrolments shows that Victoria continues to be an attractive learning destination for both domestic and international students, the additional revenue they have brought to the University has allowed us to invest in improved services and facilities for students and staff.

"The new relationship with the New Zealand's internationally-recognised, independent biomedical research centre, the Malaghan Institute for Medical Research, the collaborative New Zealand School of Music with Massey University planned for 2005 and strong backing in major research grant rounds are just some of the successes in the research field. External research income increased 35 percent compared with 2002.

"Victoria has invested heavily in capital expenditure, with $35.8 million spent in 2003. The fruits of that labour will be seen later this month when the University launches its Pipitea Campus, highlighting the new lecture theatres and learning spaces in Rutherford House and its lease over a third of the Wellington Railway Station, which is being strengthened and renovated."

Professor McCutcheon said the work would continue this year with completion of the Railway Station project and an upgrade of the Quad on the Kelburn Campus.

Note: The Annual Report is available online at: www.vuw.ac.nz/annualreports

ENDS

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