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Tuesday, 19 March 2019 09:57 pm

No milk, no sugar… no hope?

Aug 16th, 2010 | By | Category: News

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STUDENT COUCH: Association promised it for one campus, but it ended up at another.

By Anna Mathieson, Greg Ford, Hanna Butler, Owen Winter

Photos by Rachael Holmes, Juju Paraone

STUDENTS at Whitireia Polytechnic’s Cuba St campus can’t even make a cup of tea – they’ve got nothing but free hot water.

They are supposed to get their tea, coffee, milk and sugar through their student association, but have had none since March.

In the wake of this weekend’s Dominion Post revelations about money and assets missing from the Whitireia Independent Students Association (WISA), thirsty students speak of empty association promises of pool tables, couches and Sky television.

The annual $135 fee paid by students to WISA entitles students to “access to amenities, services, entertainment and advocacy,” says WISA’s website.

Whitireia Journalism School student representative Michelle Cooper met with the association in March to discuss the role of student class representatives and clarify the services and amenities offered by WISA.

“[They] could not give us any straight answers about questions to do with funding and roles.”

She was assured none of the association executive was on a salary.

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EMPTY SHELVES: Whitireia students no longer receive cash for supplies.

Miss Cooper was told  tea and coffee facilities were to be withdrawn because there was no money left for it.

Former student representative for the Whitireia journalism diploma course Lee Stace says he is quite disgusted by the controversy: “The more I read, the worse it gets.

“Getting supplies, coffee tea and milk was a slog. It took a while, and I had to keep ringing just to get the meagre amounts of money for coffee and tea.”

He says the campus was promised a couple of couches for the lunchroom. “They never came and in the end we gave up on getting them.

“[They] also said they could get a pool table, but again that never materialised.

“My impression is that the organisation was run pretty poorly.  One thing that did concern me was the lack of control.

“It looked like money was handed out and no-one questioned it.  Then no-one could answer where it went.”

Another city campus student (who declined to be named) said as students and automatic members of the student association, they should know about how the association’s money is spent: “The thing that gets me the most about this is the lack of transparency.

“I don’t have a problem with compulsory membership to student associations – it is beneficial to students.”

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