The makers of a petition to save the creative industries courses at Charles Sturt University have vowed to continue the fight after being told the courses would be removed from the Wagga campus this year.
The Daily Advertiser understands students and staff in the creative industries faculty took part in a closed-door meeting on Friday afternoon to seek further clarity on the fate of the course.
When the first session commences in a few weeks time, the university will no longer offer the creative industries degree structure to first year students.
The courses will be taught out for students in the senior levels of study.
"My understanding is that they've [the university] has turned it into a communications course with [separate] specialisations," said Jhi Raynor, alumni of the course and one of the online petition's founders.
The 2021 Charles Sturt University coursebook indicates that the Bachelor of Communications will be offered with specialisations in advertising and public relations, digital media production, journalism and theatre media.
Students wishing to study the courses on-campus will now have to do so via the Bathurst campus. Wagga will no longer be offering the in-person degree type for face-to-face students.
The Daily Advertiser reached out to Charles Sturt University for further comment on the fate of the photography, animation and theatre performance courses, but the university declined to comment at this time.
"It's a real crying shame," said Mr Raynor.
"If it's culled I think there will be a lot of people who will rally for it."
The decision to cull the theatre courses, in particular, has hit the 25-year-old alumnus close to home after he recently completed his masters in stage and screen acting at the Wagga campus.
Since it was started in December, the online petition has garnered just over 1270 signatures with industry professionals from all over the world lending their voice to the cause.
Mr Raynor said the current and former students of the course will now take the petition and testimonials from other alumni to the university dean in the hopes of turning the decision around.
"It's been an interesting battle and we're going to continue this conversation [by] talking to the dean," Mr Raynor said.
"I want to talk to arts organisations and do whatever we can to keep it [the creative industries courses] alive."
Follow petition founder and current third year student, Ava Castellaro told The Daily Advertiser she is confident the online buzz will have made "some impact" at least.
"Hopefully we can come to some [arrangement] that can at least have some elements of each of the specialised course in this new course," the 21-year-old student said.
"Anything that still gives students in the Riverina the opportunity to study these specialised areas."