Music students “taken for a ride”

Prof Morphy

POST-GRADUATE  music students at the Australian National University have voiced fears that they may have been “taken for a ride”.

The students say that reporting systems used by the university to handle submissions made over the School of Music crisis, have deprived them of a voice.

Meantime, staff who attended a meeting with the vice chancellor Prof Ian Young and his advisers on Tuesday morning reported a “hostile affair” during which an angry question from the National Tertiary Education Union’s Stephen Darwin was ignored.

“CityNews” has received several emailed copies of submissions made by students and members of the music community, but in an open letter,  PhD candidate in musicology, Matthew Lorenzon, has suggested that the figure is more like  “hundreds of students and community members”.

Lorenzon says submissions will be read over the next week by a single reader, Kathrin Kulhanek, who is to present the submissions as a “snapshot” to the University’s executive and to the steering committee.

He says that until now, the sole formal outlets of information from the school have been the Chair of the Education Committee, Jonathan Powles and the Head of Music, Adrian Walter.

But with Prof Walters’ imminent departure from the University, his position on the Change Management Project’s advisory board will be assumed by anthropologist and  head of the Research School of Humanities and the Arts, Prof Howard Morphy, who is overseas and who, Lorenzon says,  does not represent any musical expertise.

He concludes, “this is no consultation process but a token move in a larger game rigged to the detriment of the community’s trust”.


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