Large animal science, computer technology and engineering is where tertiary institutions need to be focusing investment, Tertiary Education Minister Steven Joyce says.
Industry leaders could be involved in the design of courses in the future, particularly in areas of "fast-moving technology", to ensure students graduated with relevant skills in areas where there were shortages, he said.
In front of sector representatives at Victoria University yesterday, Mr Joyce launched the draft tertiary education strategy and proposed changes to university and wananga governance.
He said cases of students graduating with "out-of-date" skills needed to stop. Some bachelor degrees could have fewer enrolments as tertiary institutions focused on "disciplines in demand".
"Let's face it, at 18 we all want to do lots of things and we all have dreams but the question we need to ask is where those dreams are leading."
It would still be up to students to decide what they studied but they would be better informed about career opportunities.
As the country moved out of the global financial crisis, employers had started to experience challenges finding people with the right skills.
An extra $27.2 million over four years had been allocated to increase tertiary tuition subsidies for engineering and science, targeting an extra 500 engineering graduates each year.
Information and communications technology had received 22 per cent more funding in the past two years in response to increased demand in the industry.
Mr Joyce also announced proposed changes to university councils and wananga, which would be finalised after six weeks of consultation.
The changes include reducing the size of councils from 12 to 20 members down to eight to 12; making council membership requirements more flexible; requiring the minister and councils to appoint members with governance capability; and clarifying the role of members.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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