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COMMENTARY: SAE Celebrates Its 40th Year

The Audient ASP4816 at the SAE Sydney Campus

SAE Creative Media Institute has been a stepping stone for many in the industry to get involved with the production, post production and even installation and live event segments. At one stage it was the only place to go to, if you had interest in all things audio..

SAE has certainly come a long way and, with 54 campuses in 28 countries, is still recognised as one of the leading global creative media educators. Curriculum has been enhanced to keep up with the digital era and different interests but competition has also been coming into SAE’s domain.

In Singapore, for example the Polytechnics and more recently the Technical Institutes have started courses that offer an alternative to SAE, while demand for creative media courses across the city-state has declined. Recent months have seen closure of SAE campuses within South-East Asia.

To get a better understanding, ETA touched base with Deputy CEO of SAE Global, Joseph Anthonysz to give us his thoughts.

“Like any market leading business, SAE is constantly reviewing its global operations and identifying new ways to take our world-class creative media courses to more students around the world. We’re currently delivering programs to more than 10,000 aspiring creatives in the areas of audio, film, animation, design, web/mobile and related disciplines.

“As part of our strategic review we recognised parts of the business and countries that would not contribute to our future plans and objectives, and that we would exit. This divestment strategy is deliberate and allows us to focus resources and capital into exciting growth opportunities in the US, UK, Europe, Australia and Middle East.

In some instances we have to make tough decisions about campuses that are not viable in the long-term. In Singapore, for example, we decided to close the campus in the face of rising costs, declining local demand for creative media courses and increasing competition from other polytechnics.

“We knew it was in the best interests of our students to close the campus rather than compromise on the quality of services, infrastructure and student experiences that we provide.

“Similarly, we exited an agreement with our SAE Malaysia licensee last year on amicable terms, recognising the partnership was not sustainable. The Thailand campus, located in Bangkok, is also owned and operated by a licensee and we will continue liaising with them to evaluate its long-term viability. No decision has been made to close the facility.”

Though SAE is still liaising with the Thailand campus licensee it is interesting to note that the GM, Daniel Choo, has already left his post.

The Indonesian campus on the other hand is certainly still operating and is a great education option for creative media students in the region. The campus, which recently underwent a $1 million upgrade, offers accredited courses including Certificates, Diplomas and Bachelor Degrees in audio, film, animation and music business.