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“Victoria” to “Wellington”: a damaging plan [UPDATED]

Hugh Rennie QC has followed his criticism from 16 July regarding the proposed name change for Victoria University of Wellington with another piece published on Scoop. His concerns about the proposal have heightened.

You can read his analysis here:

Our earlier story runs below.

“Victoria” to “Wellington”: a damaging plan

By Mark Cubey

Earlier this year, when I first read about the proposal by VUW Vice-Chancellor Grant Guilford to change the name of Victoria University of Wellington to “University of Wellington”, I was taken aback.

The plan seemed foolish, expensive and most of all, completely unnecessary.

Now, as editor of The Wellington App, I was thinking of writing at length about the plan from a branding and logistical perspective. Imagine, for instance, the cost and confusion resulting from having to change the email address for every staff member and student. And the inevitable persistence of “Vic” as a signifier.

But, now I don’t have to wax eloquent and address the proposal.

Because Hugh Rennie has just done so, and as one would expect from a top Queen’s Counsel, he has done a much better job than I could ever do.

In a personal submission sent this week to VUW he expresses his amazement that a change of name should even be suggested after nearly 60 years of VUW as a full independent university (and twice as long as a College).

It’s a long, thorough and passionate submission sparked by an email exchange with the Vice-Chancellor that left Rennie “convinced that VUW has embarked on a potentially damaging and mistaken plan, casting aside the assets now held in its name and reputation without taking steps which will achieve a greater benefit.”

An abridged version (still long) has been published on Scoop, here:

It’s required reading for any alumni, or current students and staff.