…and this is the logical conclusion of our accountancy-led culture, where everything has a price on it. The difficulty of obtaining research funding has led the academics to this:
Future of Music at UEA
The Vice-Chancellor has commissioned and accepted a report from a review panel of senior academics on the future of the School of Music.
The recommendation that will be put to the University’s governing council is that UEA should stop offering music as an academic discipline once current students have completed their degrees. If this decision is made, the University will draw on best practice from other universities’ experience of handling departmental closures of this kind, and in mentoring the students affected.
At a time when every university is facing difficult decisions about how best to prioritise its investments, the panel believes that the School of Music cannot meet the scale of the demands now being made on universities.
The School of Music’s ability to earn research funding is of particular concern, in the light of funding changes to universities. The review also notes that it would be difficult to grow student numbers within the School saying it would require the University to divert resources from, and possibly put at risk, other disciplines.
“In a harsh and increasingly competitive and market-focused environment, that is a step that UEA cannot afford to take,” said Vice-Chancellor Professor Edward Acton, who commissioned the review.
“What makes this position especially painful is the knowledge of the School’s fine achievements, the quality and passion of its staff under successive leaders and the pride and affection of cohorts of alumni”, said Professor Acton.
“Whatever Council may decide, we are determined to ensure that current students in the School are strongly supported and are able to complete their studies successfully. We also remain committed to music as a vital aspect of the social and cultural life of the University and to the continuation of the flourishing choirs and orchestras which are central to that work.”
The recommendations will be taken to the University’s Senate on 9 November 2011, and the final decision on the future of the School of Music rests with Council which meets on 28 November.