VCA Student Union runs out of dough.

Published Friday, May 15, 2009

Why can't the money be found?

The Victorian College of the Arts Student Union today went into voluntary liquidation, and will shut down by 30th June. The union has run out of funds and cannot operate after that date.

VCA Student Union President, David Haidon, blamed both the Rudd government and Melbourne University for the shut down, saying, Melbourne University’s refusal to continue funding union-run student representation and services at the VCA campus means that essential student services supplied by the union, such as independent student advocacy, will be gone in six weeks. Melbourne University managed to find more than $5 million dollars to fund other student organisations this year and last year, but they refused to provide just $155 000 to keep the VCA Student Union afloat. Mr Haidon went on to say,Ironically, the destruction of our union comes not only from the Rudd government’s continuation of Howard’s anti student union laws (VSU), but also from Melbourne University’s determination to silence the dissenting voices of visual and performing arts students on this campus.

It is no coincidence that the University’s insistence on forcing the VCA Student Union to shut precedes the full implementation of the Melbourne Model at VCA – a move that will disadvantage all arts students and seriously damage the unique courses and culture of the VCA. In the last fortnight, the University sacked most of the VCA Faculty’s sessional and casual staff, so the closure of our student union comes in the context of an absolute offensive waged by the University against the VCA.

Many VCA students are angry about the University sacking staff and the closure of the student union. More than eighty students attended a meeting today to discuss these issues and one former film school student, Robbie McEwan, disrupted last Monday night’s graduation ceremony to make an impromptu speech thanking Melbourne University for wrecking the VCA.

VCA Student representatives are working with student representatives of the University of Melbourne Student Union (UMSU) to maintain a limited student representative structure at the VCA campus, however all union-run student services will shut on 30th June.

Sourced from a Press Release from the VCA

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