Union scores massive win in fight for arts degrees and university jobs

National Tertiary Education Union

The National Tertiary Education Union has earned a major victory after Federation University reversed its decision to scrap its Bachelor of Arts degree.

The University announced last week it would close the BA program at all locations from 2023, despite failing to consult with the Union, staff or students.

But after backlash from the Union, the decision was reversed. Every job under threat has been saved.

In a letter to staff on Friday, Acting Vice-Chancellor Liam Sloan confirmed the BA program would continue in 2023 after the university listened to staff and the community.

NTEU Federation University Branch President Dr Mathew Abbott said:

“This major union win shows what can be achieved when we stand up to bad decisions from rogue Vice-Chancellors,” Mathew Abbott said.

“Working together, we have saved the jobs of hard-working staff who were left devastated by the arbitrary shutting down of a core university offering.

“It’s a huge victory for regional students and university staff who deserve access to an arts program without having to leave their communities and move to metropolitan areas.

“Arts degrees are a crucial part of what makes a university a university.”

NTEU Victorian Division Assistant Secretary Sarah Roberts:

“This sends a clear message to all university managements that we will not accept destructive decisions to shut down bedrock programs like a Bachelor of Arts,” Sarah Roberts said.

“Vice-Chancellors have been put on notice: we will fight and win when jobs and communities’ access to higher education are under threat.

“Arts graduates make society stronger. Universities must factor the cost of running an arts program into all business decisions.”

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