Uni expecting higher roll

The University of Otago is predicting its roll will hit a six-year high next year, reaching 18,830 equivalent full-time students (EFTS) despite a national drop in high school leavers also being forecast for 2019.

A budget prepared by chief financial officer Sharon Van Turnhout for next year will be presented to the university council today for approval.

The university is predicting 18,830 students, excluding foundation studies students - a 1% rise in domestic student numbers and a 5.1% rise in international student enrolment numbers.

The likely final figure for this year is 18,583, in which there was a larger rise of 1.6% for domestic enrolments, and 7.4% for international enrolments.

Increasing figures for 2017, 2018 and the prediction for 2019 follow a gradual drop in enrolment numbers between 2012 and 2016.

A decreasing number of school leavers across the country was predicted to be offset by the impact of "an increase in the number of local year 13 students, and the availability of 30 additional residential college beds'', the report said.

When it came to separate divisions, commerce enrolments at the university were predicted to climb by 8 EFTS, with domestic decline in the subject likely to be offset by a growth in the number of international students.

Health sciences were expected to grow by 23 EFTS - taking into account about 85 EFTS would shift from health sciences to other divisions due to changes to the first-year health sciences programme.

Humanities enrolments were forecast to increase by 147 EFTS next year, and enrolments in the sciences division were forecast to increase by 69 EFTS (1.6%), due to the impact of growth in 2018.

The university was expecting a 2019 surplus of $22million, down from the anticipated surplus of $24.6 million by the end of this year.



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