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Source: University of Waikato

The University of Waikato has published its Annual Report for 2020, with the response to Covid-19 a clear thread throughout its activities for the year.

An original budgeted surplus giving way to an operating deficit of $8.5m signalled continuing challenges for the University in managing the financial impacts of Covid-19, primarily due to a drop in international students.

From the effects of border restrictions on international student numbers to a phenomenal hike in video-conferencing use, Chancellor Sir Anand Satyanand has referred to 2020 as a character-building exercise for the University’s management.

“It is a matter of pride to record the efforts of the Vice-Chancellor, and all of the staff at the University, to achieve a satisfying set of results notwithstanding.”

While the effects of the pandemic on numbers of Equivalent Full-time Students (EFTS) weren’t fully felt in 2020, a snapshot of results from the year shows the impact of lockdown and changing alert levels on students. More than $650,000 of hardship funding, 260 Chromebooks and 129 internet connections were distributed to students to support remote study and assist them with the additional challenges posed by lockdown.

Other statistics demonstrate the resilience of the University in quickly adapting to online and blended teaching and learning, with qualification completion and work-integrated learning enrolments both up on the previous year.

Vice-Chancellor Professor Neil Quigley says the Annual Report shows key decisions made during the pandemic put students at the forefront.

“The University has been true to its motto, ‘Ko te Tangata’ in putting people first in all that we have done. Everyone in the University of Waikato community should be proud of the contribution they have made.”

Covid-19 aside, the report also catalogues progress on The Pā, the major construction project on the University’s Hamilton campus, as well as the work of the Taskforce, formed following the Parata Gardiner Report on allegations of racism at the University.

Read the full report.

MIL OSI