Sunday, October 8, 2023

Future of Australian Higher Education is the Stage on the Stage in Sydney's Inner West

Italian Forum Cultural Centre
Last night I attended a performance of "La Giara" (The Jar) by Luigi Pirandello at the The Italian Forum, Leichhardt, in Sydney's Inner West. Most know this as the location for Italian restaurants, a public library, and some apartments. But hidden underneath is a modern drama theater, with retractable seating. This is the home of Actors Centre Australia, a Registered Training Organisation, which teaches drama. 

Occasionally you might see the students run out into the forum's piazza and perform free-form routines (pretending to be a tree). What I hadn't realized, until picking up a brochure in the forum last night, is that they also offer bachelor degrees, through Torrens University Australia. This provides one useful model for Australian higher education. A local campus, where students can receive hands on tuition (literally), for vocational qualifications, and also study for a degree.

Torrens University is a non-government, for profit organisation. However, there is no reason why Australia's not-for-profit universities could not have similar arrangements with government TAFEs, and private vocational training organisations. Some Australian universities already do this, being dual sector, and some TAFEs are accredited to issues degrees. But at present this is on a small scale.

ps: The Actors Center students are putting on "Waiting For Godot" next May. Given concern in Sydney over recycling and affordable housing, perhaps they should put on Beckett's Endgame instead, with the actors in wheelie bins. ;-)

    No comments:

    Post a Comment