Victoria, Wellington

Victoria University is considering a name change, it says to avoid confusion with similarly named universities in other parts of the world (including in Victoria University in Melbourne).

It has been suggested it be renamed University of Wellington with some te reo tacked on.

Stuff: Victoria University of Wellington looking to change name to avoid overseas confusion

Victoria University could be renamed the University of Wellington as the tertiary institute tries to eliminate confusion for potential overseas students.

Vice-chancellor professor Grant Guilford said a name change was on the cards to provide “clarity” and avoid other universities taking credit for work done at the Wellington campus.

Hutt South MP and Victoria University alumni Chris Bishop said he initially opposed the idea. However, he understood the university’s reasons for a name change having copped years of confusion while competing overseas with the debating team.

“There’s an emotional connection to the place. There will be people who say that you’re giving up the 100-plus years of a brand and the integrity and credibility behind it.”

Wellington Mayor Justin Lester, who was consulted with on the idea, said it was a good strategic move that he wholeheartedly supported.

Victoria University alumni Ian McKinnon said the name meant “a great deal” to him but he would not stand in the way of change that was supported, and in the best interests of the institute’s future.

Any name change will be put before Education Minister Chris Hipkins to gazette the changes. Hipkins said he could not comment on the potential name change.

It has been pointed out the while ‘Victoria’ is dated and largely irrelevant in modern New Zealand, so is Wellington.

Te Herenga Waka, which translates to the hitching post for your canoe, has been suggested.

That seems like an odd choice.

What about one of the three Māori names for Wellington?

  • Te Whanga-nui-a-Tara – ‘the great harbour of Tara’
  • Te Upoko-o-te-Ika-a-Māui – ‘the head of the fish of Māui’
  • Pōneke – derived from Port Nick, short for Port Nicholson (refers to the southernmost part of the North Island)

The first two on their own (or tacked on) could also be confusing internationally.

Why not University of Aotearoa?

Currently a Stuff online poll asks: Should Victoria University of Wellington change it’s name?

  • No. It’s sacrilege to change more than 100 years of tradition – 0%
  • Yes. It will stop confusion and focus on Wellington’s global brand – 0%
  • Maybe. But there has to be a better alternative – 100%

But don’t rely too much on online polls, especially when there has been only 1 voter (I had to vote to see the results).

 

 

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33 Comments

  1. David

     /  May 2, 2018

    Lets hope they choose a Maori name that is near impossible to spell or pronounce properly and when the newly minted graduates travel overseas it looks like they downloaded their degree off the internet.

    Reply
    • PartisanZ

       /  May 2, 2018

      It’s all entirely 100% about Pakeha “rebranding” … But I know! … Let’s make it about Maori and put a negative slant on it!

      Reply
      • Kitty Catkin

         /  May 2, 2018

        The race thing is irrelevant. I dislike changing the name for what are obviously specious reasons. Nobody would think that Victoria University of Wellington was based in Madras, India. So what if others are called that ? A Kiwi is most likely to have gone to the one here.

        I think that people are trying hard to justify giving it an irrelevant Maori name without admitting to being PC.

        Reply
  2. PartisanZ

     /  May 2, 2018

    Could just change it to Wikitoria?

    Reply
    • Gezza

       /  May 2, 2018

      Despite earlier comment below, having a think about this. Possibly.

      Would be unique & Maori. Only thing is many people would think it was something to do with Wikipedia.

      Reply
      • Gezza

         /  May 2, 2018

        OK. I’ve had a think.
        Wikitoria University (short name); Wikitoria University of Wellington (long name) I could go with. And I live here, so my opinion gets 10 more points than any from people who don’t.

        Reply
        • Gezza

           /  May 2, 2018

          Every downtick increase the multiplier for my points. Just saying.

          Reply
          • Kitty Catkin

             /  May 2, 2018

            It’s Victoria University of Wellington now, as far as I know – VUW,

            Reply
            • Kitty Catkin

               /  May 2, 2018

              Yes, it still is, end of problem. It was that when I was there and it still is, The name change would make all the degrees with that on them, like my first one, have to be changed, as well as the enormous expense that comes with any name change. As an undergrad, I had a part-time cleaning job for Fletcher Challenge. When they changed their name, you should have seen all the boxes of expensive stationery that were put out to be thrown away. I had letter & note paper for years, just crossed through the name.

              Leave Vic’s name as it is; Victoria University of Wellington.

              There are many Wellingtons, including one in India.

  3. Gezza

     /  May 2, 2018

    University of Wellington. That’s the city & the province it’s in. No argument, I’m afraid. Just how it is.

    The city of Port Nicholson, then Wellington, was built by pakeha so it never had a Maori name.

    Wellington harbour’s another matter. Calling it Poneke as an alternative when appropriate I could go with – although heeps of peeps including Trump would call it poeneeky.

    Shaw’s an idiot. Everybody sensible knows.
    He’ll have to go. 😡
    Who else have they got? o_O

    Reply
    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  May 2, 2018

      “PC University of Southern Waikato” nails it.

      Reply
      • Gezza

         /  May 2, 2018

        Drivel.

        Reply
        • Kitty Catkin

           /  May 2, 2018

          When WINTEC changed its name, I suspect that I wasn’t alone in suggesting South Hamilton Institute of Technology.

          Reply
  4. sorethumb

     /  May 2, 2018

    james Shaw is informed by post colonial studies
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Postcolonialism

    Reply
    • PartisanZ

       /  May 2, 2018

      The studies most appropriate to a post-colonial era …

      Reply
      • sorethumb

         /  May 2, 2018

        Post colonial studies views colonisation (European settlement) as a disease. It is an ethnically based political push back. It sees a dichotomy: Maori/Pakeha and “Maori want”.
        It is a voice articulated from within academia and replicated in bureaucracy and media. It says “we must break our culture apart and rebuild it”. Hence Morning Report has te reo as though it was The Lords Prayer,

        Reply
        • sorethumb

           /  May 2, 2018

          I remember Grandpa listening to 3YA. When he is listening to the weather I interupt and he yells “HARK!!!”. Cultural change is upon us because New Zealanders are becoming a minority. That was always the plan of the left – to break the “Anglo Saxon hegemony”. Is Auckland better or worse. The Transport Blog says it is (better)? Better for whom? Not Maori.

          Reply
        • phantom snowflake

           /  May 2, 2018

          Just for you, then, The Lord’s Prayer in Te Reo:

          Te Karakia O Te Atua

          E tō mātou Matua i te rangi
          Kia tapu tou Ingoa
          Kia tae mai tou rangatira-tanga.
          Kia meatia tau e pai ai
          ki runga i te whenua,
          kia rite ano ki to te rangi.
          Homai ki a mātou aianei
          he taro mā mātou mo tēnei ra.
          Murua o mātou hara
          Me mātou hoki e muru nei
          i o te hunga e hara ana ki a mātou.
          Aua hoki mātou e kawea kia whaka-waia;
          Engari whaka-orangia mātou, i te kino:
          Nou hoki te rangatira-tanga,
          te kaha,
          me te kororia,
          Ake, ake, ake.
          Āmine.

          Reply
          • Kitty Catkin

             /  May 2, 2018

            Did grandpa think that hark meant quiet ?

            Reply
  5. Geoffrey

     /  May 2, 2018

    I think “Sorethumb” has nailed it. This is a load of codswallop conjured up to justify Maorification of yet another new Zealand institution.

    Reply
  6. Maggy Wassilieff

     /  May 2, 2018

    Some of my old acquaintances went to VUW when it was part of the University of New Zealand.

    If VUW has to take on a Maori moniker, then the 3 suggestions above are not very good:
    1. Te Whanganui a tara…. too easy to confuse with Whanganui institutions
    (I’m an past pupil of Whanganui High.)
    2. Maui’s Fish head… too long
    3. Poneke …. too colonial

    Most appropriate would be either: Te Aro (the location of central Wellington)
    or Terawhiti (Wellington Peninsula)

    Reply
    • Kitty Catkin

       /  May 2, 2018

      Te Aro is a suburb’s name, so sounds as if that’s where the university is.

      I think that something else may be called Terawhiti; it sounds familiar.

      Reply
      • Kitty Catkin

         /  May 2, 2018

        There is a massive sheep station called that, one of NZ’s largest.

        Reply
      • Maggy Wassilieff

         /  May 2, 2018

        Cape Terawhiti is the SW point of the North Island.
        VUW is located on the western side of Wellington Harbour. (Wellington Peninsula)
        (I suggested Terawhiti to counter PG’s suggestion that Poneke is the southernmost portion of the North Island)
        Terawhiti Station is located on the hills above Cape Terawhiti.
        (It’s now predominately beef cattle… (only about 1500 sheep now), feral goats and pigs)
        You can look out onto the Terawhiti hills (now with Meridian windfarm turbines) from 9th Floor Kirk Building, VUW.

        VUW is located across two suburbs…. Kelburn and Te Aro

        Reply
        • I thought Te Aro would be quite apropriate when i checked the Maori dictionary: aro (noun) interest, focus (stative) be comprehended, understood.

          But…tē aro it’s incomprehensible, hasn’t got a clue

          Reply
        • Kitty Catkin

           /  May 3, 2018

          One generally associates it with Kelburn, quite a bit’s in Kelburn Pde, or was when I was there.

          Reply
        • Kitty Catkin

           /  May 3, 2018

          I was also confusing it with Tairawhiti, the polytech.

          Reply
  7. Te Whare Wānanga o te Upoko-o-te-Ika-a-Māui is Vic’s actual Maori name. They use this quite visibly too. I’m happy to keep that as a Maori name but in New Zealand Wānanga has certain connotations that could be misleading. We would definitely need a English name too. As a Vic graduate though, I’m not University of Wellington is it.

    Reply
    • Kitty Catkin

       /  May 2, 2018

      I wonder if they want to reduce it to the level of a wananga.

      Reply
  8. Trevors_elbow

     /  May 2, 2018

    No Maori name required. My alma mater is perfectly fine as it is. Universities have zip to do with Maori culture… so stop trying to appropriate them….

    Lazy academics producing shit papers is not the fault of the institutions name…. do a better job and the name will stick out as a bastion of quality research….

    Reply
    • Kitty Catkin

       /  May 2, 2018

      Think of the famous people who went to and lectured there…Bill Manhire, Winifred Hall, James K Baxter….

      Reply
      • Maggy Wassilieff

         /  May 2, 2018

        Famous….Harry Orsman, Harold Wellman, ….

        Infamous… Ngatata Love

        Dreary…Geoffrey Palmer

        Reply
        • Kitty Catkin

           /  May 3, 2018

          Harry Orsman; I loved him. What a brilliant man.

          Lydia Wevers.

          er…has total mind blank (long day)

          Reply

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