Release type: Media Release

Date:

Student Services Reforms Vital for Sport on Campus

Ministers:

The Hon Kate Ellis MP
Minister for Youth

Minister for Youth and Sport Kate Ellis today released the final guidelines that will underpin the Rudd Government’s student services reforms.

Minister Ellis was visiting the University of Queensland to witness the severe impact of the previous government’s approach on university sport.

Ms Ellis said: ‘The Rudd Government’s student services reforms will help to rebuild vital university sport services by supporting the role they play in Australia’s sporting performance.

‘As well as boosting student services, these reforms will help to sustain university sporting teams and facilities – allowing them to foster the next generation of Australian sporting champions.

‘University sport also helps to improve the health and fitness of students, and assists students from interstate, rural and remote areas to build social networks and become part of their university community.

‘Here at the University of Queensland, there have been significant cuts to sports funding – which has had an adverse effect on student participation, particularly among females.’

UQ student and Olympic Rower Sam Conrad also met with Ms Ellis.

Mr Conrad said: ‘About half of the Australian Beijing Olympic Team had university links in 2008, making it vital that university sport is strengthened in the future.

Ms Ellis said: ‘The previous government’s approach resulted in $170 million worth of cuts to student services and amenities at universities across Australia.

‘Australian students have been literally paying the price for this loss through reduced services, increased costs on campus and the redirection of funding out of research and teaching budgets to make up the shortfall of funding for campus services.

Ms Ellis was joined by UQ A/Vice Chancellor, Professor Michael Keniger, UQ Sport CEO Kim Guerin and Australian University Sport CEO Don Knapp.

Representatives from the regional University of Southern Queensland, University of the Sunshine Coast and University of Southern Cross were also in attendance.

Student services are important not only to campuses all around the country, but also to the Australian economy – building a productive and well rounded workforce into the future.

‘This legislation is listed for debate in the Senate next week and given the importance of the Government’s student services reforms, I urge the Senate to pass the legislation quickly.’

The release of the Guidelines today follows comprehensive consultations with the university sector and a broad range of stakeholders.

For copies of the revised content for the guidelines, visit http://www.deewr.gov.au/higheredstudentservices.