The politics of Funding: Re-positioning the Arts- A Creative Industries HEPPP equity initiative case study

Year: 2017

Author: Grushka, Kathryn, Lawry, Miranda, Kerrigan, Susan, Grupetta, Maree, Shadbolt, Jane, Street, Kristi, Chand, Ari

Type of paper: Abstract refereed

This presentation showcases a Creative Industries HEPPP equity initiative case study and its research findings. It presents the rationale for a successful Australian Government Department of Education and Training, Higher Education Participation and Partnership Program (HEPPP) (2016-17) that provides academics with a rare opportunity to find a space within current policy to foreground the significance of Creative Industries technologies and learning in Higher Education to Career advisors, schools and community in regional and remote NSW with low SES and Aboriginal And Torres Strait Islander representation.

Government policy now prioritises Science, Technology, Engineering and mathematics (STEM) learning across all levels of education in Australia. The creative arts for learning and communication have now been marginalised, underfunded and undervalued, even though they are seen as an enabler for national advantage and the potential to drive economies and build future entrepreneurs for a global economy (Bevis, 2015).

The Creative Industries (CI) Project: Creative Industries: Re-imagining Regional and Remote Students' Opportunities will see university academics and their creative industries university mentors present the CI Roadshow to secondary schools. It has two key components: the hands on CI Roadshow travelling to schools with workshops and a national YOUTUBE video screenings of young Creative Industries Innovators and Entrepreneurs as well as a mobile exhibition.

The project was able to pitch this alternate technological career pathway option given the present and long-term decline of traditional mining, farming and manufacturing jobs (Rural Councils Victoria, 2014) across Australia. Backed by an ARC linkage report that identifies that regional areas do foster Creative Industry careers, contrary to the belief that the creative industries only operates in capital cities (McIntyre et. al 2015). Also Career Advisors have been found to have little influence on career choice (Lyons & Quinn, 2012) and that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students prefer to learn through real life hands on learning, "You Can't be what you can't see (Wilks & Wilson, 2014).

This research and evaluation seeks to identify whether these kinds of hands on and online learning events can impact on students choices to pursue higher education and shift student career options to creative industries technological learning. The research is a mix of qualitative approaches to data collection. They include an online survey, workshop feedback questionnaire, video documentation, mentor focus group interviews and ongoing critical reflections of the CI Roadshow team. The presentation will share video clips and preliminary survey findings.