A LONG-serving Monash University Gippsland academic has called on the Gippsland community to throw its support behind a new regional university to ensure its success.
School of Applied Media and Social Sciences lecturer Dr Debra Manning told The Express a new university entity represented a “shared challenge” and an “exciting opportunity”.
“If Gippsland wants a successful, regional, tertiary education and research facility we need to work together not only to develop it, but most importantly, to support it,” Dr Manning said.
Locals needed to contribute to the creation of a new university by determining which courses they wanted offered “for themselves, for their children, for their communities, for their businesses and organisations,” Dr Manning said.
“What research can the university engage in to meet the needs of Gippsland communities, industries and businesses?” Dr Manning asked.
She said it was vital the Gippsland community then committed to ‘buying local’ “to keep our university campus vibrant and provide our community with education and research services we value”.
“This support includes enrolling in the courses the community wants the university to offer, and creating research partnerships and consultancies with the campus.”
While Dr Manning said she believed professional and academic staff were excited by the new opportunity on offer, she warned “the old adage ‘use it or lose it’ will apply in the foreseeable financial climate.”