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University name change suggestion

By Don Franks

On Friday July 27th Victoria University of Wellington’s Council agreed in principle to “simplify” the University’s name to ‘University of Wellington’.

The Council also made a draft decision to recommend that the Minister of Education approve University of Wellington as the new legal name for the University.

So a name change isn’t set in concrete just yet.
Some folks are sentimental about Victoria, probably not because of the old English queen.

More likely because they enjoyed a good time up at Vic in the easier days.
Back when there were lots of cheap flats near the campus, when you could fool around for three years, scrape through a BA and thus automatically score a higher rate in an office job. When you didn’t need a punishing loan to get a degree, when one degree- in anything- was enough.

When business studies hadn’t grown like cancer to displace minority interest arts subjects.

When there was a regular open forum in the quad, where middle class kids just out of school could be exposed to shocking new social and political ideas.
When there was a quad.

That was Vic back in the day and that day won’t come again this side of the revolution. The degree factory element was always a part of Victoria university, previously a bit of an unacknowledged bastard child, in the shadow of the so called conscience of society, who was really rather a wimp all along. Today the bastard is completely, openly in charge. The buildings by the old cemetry up on the hill are where tomorrows skilled wage slaves get processed to obey, and where tidy sums are made on the side by processing wage slaves for other countries.

Victoria is different to the cosier 1968 place I hung out in, a name change is probably in order.

The town its in provides a hint - call the monstrosity Capital University. For where the thing sits, and for who it unblinkingly serves.


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