Victorian universities’ 2020 annual reports show financial recovery


He expects international student enrollment to decline until 2023, before rising again. “As we leave 2021, we remain hopeful for a fresh and brighter 2022,” said Vice-Chancellor Professor Margaret Gardner.

Hurley said the number of international student visa holders in higher education had fallen by about a third since the start of the pandemic and universities were still collecting income from students when they were away. foreign.

“But international higher education students living in the country have fallen by more than 50%. It was those who relied on their presence – and their work – who suffered the most,” he said.

Swinburne University said its hopes for 2021 had not been realized, despite moving to a $40.9 million surplus from a $56 million deficit the previous year.

“At the start of the year, we believed that 2021 would be a year of recovery following the devastating impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Alas, that has not been the case, and as a nation and an institution, we have lived through another difficult and disruptive year,” Vice-Chancellor Professor Pascale Quester said in the annual report.

Swinburne Vice-Chancellor Pascale Quester said 2021 was another difficult year.Credit:Eamon Gallagher

Deakin University is Australia’s largest educator of domestic students, and last year those enrollments increased by 3.9% while international student enrollments fell by 25%. Reporting a surplus of $17.2 million, Chancellor John Stanhope projected a deficit for 2022 but said Deakin had enough cash, investment reserves and borrowing capacity to cope.

Victoria’s regional university, the Federation, lost international and domestic enrollment last year. It recorded a surplus of $33.1 million, the result of positive revaluations on investments.

Vice-Chancellor Professor Duncan Bentleys said in the report that this year had started better.


“Domestic enrollment is up from previous years and international enrollment is better than the same time in 2021. The university continues to work with state and federal governments to enable our international students to study on campus,” he said.

Posting an improved operating deficit of $19.5 million, La Trobe University said 2021 was one of the toughest years it had faced as COVID-19 affected all areas of its activity.

The 58-year-old university, set up to broaden participation in higher education in North Melbourne and regional Victoria, predicted a 1% decline in revenue for this year ahead of an increase in revenue growth to levels pre-COVID in 2023.

“The missing cohorts from late 2020 and 2021 – and potentially through 2022 – will have a continuing impact,” he said.

Posting a meager operating surplus of $1.3 million, the University of Victoria said the state and its “outstanding universities” emerged from the shutdowns with “ideas still floating around.”

The University of Melbourne, another of Australia’s top-ranked universities, said its annual report would be tabled in parliament later.

Larkins said he expects universities to improve their financial situation again this calendar year. “The positive thing is that universities are resilient and their balance sheets, overall, were very strong. We expect 2022 to show further improvement.

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