Summary 5 April 2017

The Board of Trustees met on 5 April 2017 in the Boardroom, Building EB, Parramatta South campus. A summary of matters discussed in open session is provided below.

The minutes (PDF, 2288.96 KB) (opens in a new window) of the previous Board meeting held on 22 February 2017 were confirmed.

Main Items Considered by the Board

Election of Deputy Chancellors

Ms Liz Dibbs was re-elected as Deputy Chancellor to 31 December 2017, and Ms Genevieve Gregor (who was previously Pro Chancellor) was elected as Deputy Chancellor to 31 December 2017.

Assurance of Internal Controls

At the end of each financial year, the Vice-Chancellor signs a certification attesting that Australian Government financial assistance has been expended appropriately and in compliance with legislation, contracts, agreements and program guidelines. The Board noted that the Vice-Chancellor, being satisfied that the University had obtained the level of assurance required for the certification of the 2016 accounts to proceed, had signed the annual certification.

2016 Audited Financial Statements

The Vice-President (Finance and Resources) presented the 2016 financial statements and key issues. NSW Audit Office representatives advised the Board that the NSW Auditor-General would issue unmodified audit opinions for the University and all of its controlled entities.

The Board resolved to adopt the audited Financial Statements and endorse signature by the Chancellor and Vice-Chancellor.

Annual Report and Board Report

The Board of Trustees approved the Western Sydney University Annual Report 2016, including the Board of Trustees report, and authorised the Vice-Chancellor to sign it on behalf of the Board.

Chancellor's Report

The Chancellor advised the Board about a number of issues including: the impending turnover in Board membership, the Foundation's fundraising activities and the development of an ethics framework for the University.

Vice-Chancellor's Report

The Vice-Chancellor advised the Board about recent activities to support the University's internationalisation strategy, the upcoming Federal budget and possible implications for higher education, and the range of new measures to manage student attrition and improve retention.

Changes to Titles and Reporting Lines

To enable the Vice-Chancellor to undertake a more strategic focus on the University's operations and balance the portfolio responsibilities of the University's Executive Group, the Board approved:

(1)    the change in title for the Deputy Vice-Chancellor Academic to Provost and Deputy Vice-Chancellor Academic with effect from 1 July 2017

(2)    the transfer of the reporting lines of the Deans of Schools from the Vice-Chancellor to the Provost and Deputy Vice-Chancellor Academic with effect from 1 July 2017

(3)    the change in title for the Deputy Vice-Chancellor Research and Development to Deputy Vice-Chancellor Research, Engagement,  Development and International (REDI) with effect from 1 July 2017

(4)    the transfer of reporting lines and the portfolios for the Pro Vice-Chancellor Engagement and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Leadership, and Pro Vice-Chancellor International, to the Deputy Vice-Chancellor Research, Engagement, Development and International (REDI) with effect from 1 July 2017.

School Performance Report – School of Science and Health

Professor Gregory Kolt, Dean of the School of Science and Health, presented to the Board on the School's:  context and the continuum of its disciplines; load and enrolments; program offerings and areas for development and expansion; innovations in education and research strengths; and internationalisation and current opportunities. The Board noted the School's strengths, its size and its multi-campus footprint and that its international activities include international clinical placements and exchanges; opportunities for international on-shore students and international research links.

Western Sydney University Online Renewal Business Case

The Board approved the Western Sydney Online Renewal Business Case on the proviso that Finance and Investment Committee receives regular reports and that the Steering Committee includes a member of the Finance and Investment Committee.

Helen Fleming
University Secretary and General Counsel