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March 29, 2010 | by  | in News | [ssba]

Tertiary Education Minister’s tertiary education in the firing line


Tertiary Education Minister Steven Joyce’s academic record was the subject of debate in parliament last week.

The Dominion Post reported that Joyce tabled his academic record during question time, in response to Labour’s “jibes over his academic credentials”.

Labour MP Trevor Mallard waited until the end of question time to seek leave for the House to debate a motion congratulating Joyce on his academic achievements.

The motion was unopposed by Leader of the House Gerry Brownlee.

The Dominion Post reported that Mallard “regaled parliament with the ‘highlights’ of Mr Joyce’s academic career—including a bunch of DNCs (did not complete), such as in economic theory and monetary economics”.

Joyce has been touted as a future Minister of Finance.

Labour’s Tertiary Education spokesperson Maryan Street does not think Joyce’s academic results would have seen him make the cut under the proposed new tertiary education funding model, which may be based on students’ pass rates.

“Steven Joyce is looking to deny students the same educational opportunities he had,” says Street.

“He, better than anyone else, should understand that tertiary education is often not a linear journey. And many students—like him—start with one goal in mind, and end up achieving something very different when they complete their studies.”

Critic reported earlier this year in an interview with the minister that his university career “didn’t go according to plan” and that “he had dreams of becoming a vet but didn’t make the cut for second year”.

Joyce instead completed a degree in zoology, but it was 18 years before he had his Bachelor of Science conferred.


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