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Victoria University of Wellington 1899 ~ 1999 A History

Chapter Eight

Chapter Eight

1 J.C. Beaglehole, Victoria University College, Wellington, 1949, pp.108–9.

2 Ibid., p.109.

3 Science faculty resolution to the Professorial Board, 8 June 1959, quoted in Notes on resolutions of Professorial Board and Council with reference to developments in technology, especially engineering, 10 May 1963, VC file 46: box 9C, P23. Victoria was particularly concerned about the establishment of a national institute of technology. The Central Institute of Technology was established at Petone in 1960, and became a purely national institute moved it to Heretaunga in Upper Hutt in 1972.

4 Williams to the secretary, New Zealand Institute of Engineers, 7 Oct. 1958, VC file 46.

5 Notes on resolutions … with reference to developments in technology.

6 Submissions to Committee on New Zealand Universities, 1959, p.109.

7 Kingston of Kingston Reynolds, the university's architectural advisers, reported back to Williams on this subject in 1961 after a visit to America, and advised the vice-chancellor on where he in turn should go on his own trip abroad in 1963.

8 Visit of University Grants Committee, 1963: meeting with executive committee of Council, 21 Oct. 1963, VC file 1088: box 2A, R95/24. Hope was still held, however, for an engineering school in the future as an organic growth from architecture. ‘We are pinning our hopes for our first entry into the field of technology on the University Grants Committee giving us the “go-ahead” on the establishment of a School of Architecture,’ the new vice-chancellor wrote to Canterbury's dean of engineering in 1968. (Vice-chancellor to Prof. A.M. Kennedy, 8 Aug. 1968, VC file 1088; Quinquennial submission, 1970–75, June 1968.)

9 It is worth noting that the establishment of the first engineering and architecture schools had occasioned an especially bitter special-school squabble between Canterbury and Auckland in the early decades of the century.

10 These were the institute's figures. Students studied part-time from Auckland University, while there was also an architectural course offered by the Wellington Technical College. In addition, the Architectural Centre established in Wellington in 1946, in part to meet this educational need, conducted its own summer schools for a time. Its 1947–48 summer school focused on the Te Aro flat area that Victoria's Students' Association had suggested in 1945 as an alternative site for the college.

11 Visit of University Grants Committee, 1963: meeting with executive committee of Council; S.G. Culliford, Engineering education: note of conversation with Mr. R. Kingston and Mr. I.B. Reynolds, 15 Feb. 1965, VC file 1088. The Hughes Parry committee, however, advised that the second architecture school, when it was needed, should be established at Canterbury, while the Institute of Architects' support for Victoria had wavered: their 1957 resolution had apparently ‘caused a schism in their ranks and was later rescinded’. (Visit of University Grants Committee, 1963: comment by Llewellyn, UGC chairman.)

12 ‘Dr Gerd Block’, NZIA Journal, Mar. 1974, p.34.

13 G. Block, B.Arch. course – general notes, 1 May 1976, VC file 2152: box 7B, R98/20; D. Kernohan (comp.), Architecture and Building Science at Wellington, Wellington, 1985.

14 Report of the visiting board of the Architects Education & Registration Board [etc], July 1981, VC file 2157: box 7B, R98/21.

15 Notes on resolutions … with reference to developments in technology.

16 Quinquennial submission, 1970–75 (June 1968), p.16, Council minutes, 1968, pp.396Aff.

17 Report on medical education in New Zealand and the need for a third medical school, Oct. 1970. The joint committee had been convened in 1968; the government's announcement of its medical school plans was made in July 1970. Much of the report was devoted to debating the official estimates of the number of doctors (of various kinds) the country would need in the future.

18 A.P. Mulcock to Taylor, 2 Apr. 1971, science faculty (SF) 7: box 20B.

19 W.E. Dasent and S.F.W. Johnston, Victoria University and medical education, 31 Jan. 1978, CFU 121: box 50D.

20 Taylor, Medical education at Victoria, 6 Sept. 1978, VC file 1078: box 2D, R95/36.

21 Taylor to C. Maiden, vice-chancellor, University of Auckland, 15 Mar. 1972, VC file 1109: box 2A, R95/ 26.

22 There were a total of 28 enrolments in the three six-credit courses (at stages two and three) in 1981.

23 Report of the Academic Development Committee on a proposal for a course of study leading to the degree of Bachelor of Nursing, 14 Aug. 1987, p.5, VC file 2345: box 8B, R98/48.

24 Evening Post, 22 Nov. 1976; News VUW, 10 Dec. 1976.

25 A course in primary health care was sponsored by the Alcoholic Liquor Advisory Council, and one in cancer nursing supported by the McKenzie Trust and the Cancer Foundation.

26 Evening Post, 17 Dec. 1990.

27 Report of committee on academic development of the page 400 College, 28 Oct. 1948, Council minutes, 1948, p.195; Hunter, Establishment of new chairs, 16 Nov. 1949, VC file 197: box 10B, P47; principal's report, Nov. 1953, Council minutes, 1953, p.858.

28 Report of the Asian Studies Committee, 6 Oct. 1955, Council minutes, 1956, pp.19–22.

29 A. Toynbee, The Resurrection of Asia and the Role of the Commonwealth, Wellington, 1956. This was also the inaugural W.E. Collins lecture, honouring a bequest.

30 Council minutes, 26 Mar., 10 Apr. 1956, pp.134, 135D. The decision was hardly in keeping with Victoria's reputation as the left-leaning, open-minded college, and it is difficult to imagine that it would have been taken in Hunter's time. James Bertram gives an account of the trip in Capes of China Slide Away (Auckland, 1993), pp.299ff. The invitation had come from the Chinese People's Association for Cultural Relations with Foreign Countries. The delegation, led by former Labour MP Ormond Wilson, included painter Eve Page and sculptor Margaret Garland, anthropologists Bill Geddes and Roger Duff, Otago professor of history Angus Ross, Presbyterian minister Tom Somerville, Charles Hilgendorf, a farmer, and teacher Ngaire Te Punga.

31 Among them were Peter Webster in Geography and Tim Beaglehole in History, while Peter Munz at this time was developing an interest in Indian religion.

32 VUC Calendar, 1962, p.228. A Diploma in the Study of Tropical Societies was also briefly listed in the calendar, developed by Palmier, in 1963–66, but may never have been offered. It was intended for ‘persons engaged in, or hoping to take up, work concerned with tropical countries and other territories with comparable problems, as well as for those who wish to gain an understanding of political, social and economic affairs in such countries’.

33 The co-author of this report was economics professor Frank Holmes, another member of the Asian Studies Committee. The Hayter report (on Oriental, Slavonic, Eastern European and African studies, 1961) had also identified lack of students as one of the problems met by Asian studies in Britain. (Proposal for reorganization of Asian Studies at V.U.W., 29 Nov. 1962, VC file 747: box 4C, R95/86.)

34 Their estimate of student numbers was based on the experience of Australian universities. (Brookes (dean of arts), Establishment of a Department of Oriental Languages, 27 May 1963, VC file 1077: box 2D, R95/ 36.)

35 Professor Palmier had resigned in 1963; lecturer George Kurian was acting head of the department during 1963– 64.

36 J.C. Beaglehole made inquiries while in London: even British universities, it seems, were finding it hard to find the kind of person required. Wood reported back to the vice-chancellor: ‘the best hope of getting our man might well be to play it rather the American way, i.e., hire quickly, perhaps for a short period, on conditions suitable for the individual concerned and tip him out if it did not work’. A British Asian specialist, rather than an Asian, was evidently preferred: Wood also reported that ‘our chance of recruiting an Englishman was quite negligible … the only hope was to find a suitably qualified Asian and to take the risks involved’. Beaglehole had three recommendations in hand from Percival Spear. (Wood, memos for the vice-chancellor, 3 Aug., 11 Aug. 1966, VC file 747.)

37 J.D. Gould, Asian Studies Centre. Report by the dean of arts to the Committee of Vice-chancellor and Deans, Oct. 1975, VC file 2155: box 7B, R98/21. The reference file was compiled by MA students employed as part-time research assistants. Janaki had also hoped to remedy the lack of visual resources for Asian studies in Wellington, suggesting that ‘it would appear not unreasonable’ for the university to ask the director of the Dominion Museum to obtain a few representative pieces on permanent loan from, say, the British Museum, or the Victoria and Albert Museum.

38 This was the ‘Brookes-Hall dispute’. W.J. Hall was a lecturer in the centre; Ralph Brookes was convenor of the Asian Studies Committee. The ‘crisis in Asian Studies has long been an abcess suppurating at this University,’ Hall wrote in one trenchant article in Salient (14 July 1967). In his view Victoria should have been sending its Asian studies graduates to Asia, from where they would come back as Asian experts to New Zealand.

39 Appointment of Director of Asian Studies, Sept. 1964, VC file 2155; Janaki and Brookes, Future policy in Asian Studies [1967], VC file 2164: box 7B, R98/22.

40 Janaki, Report on implementation of policy on Asian Studies at the Victoria University of Wellington, memo for the vice-chancellor, 26 Sept. 1967, VC file 747.

41 Gould, Asian Studies Centre, Oct. 1975.

42 When the secretary for foreign affairs, Frank Corner, suggested to Victoria in 1975 that the university establish a chair in ‘contemporary China studies (or Chinese politics, or what you will)’, in honour of Rewi Alley, the vice-chancellor told him that a similar proposal was already being discussed: the faculty put forward a proposal for a Rewi Alley Centre for the study of contemporary China this year, while an advocate of the ‘area studies’ approach for the Asian Studies Centre had China in mind. A similar proposal was being floated by the faculty of languages and literature in the mid– 1980s. Janaki herself, meanwhile, was proposing restricting Victoria's courses in Asian languages to stages one and two, leaving Auckland to do all advanced work, and the introduction of a third language, such as Persian or Arabic. (Corner to Taylor, 2 Apr. 1975, and reply, 11 Apr.; John Roberts, draft proposal for a China studies centre, 7 Apr. 1975, VC file 2004: box 6D, R98/1.)

43 Gould, p.5.

44 H. Franklin, & D. Winchester (eds), Victoria Geography Teaching and Research, Wellington, 1993, p.21.

45 A. Levett to Gould, 12 Aug. 1975, VC file 2164. Asian Studies' staff:student ratio was 1:4-5, the university average was 1:11–12. Enrolments in its courses were between 16 and 25 at stage one; five and 18 at stage two; four and eight at stage three.

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46 There was no serious consideration given to disestablishing the positions, and in fact the university did not have procedures for doing so. The redeployment was nevertheless, as Gould anticipated, a complicated and protracted business, involving five different types of contractual agreement in the various staff members' terms of appointment, not to mention issues of professional and academic status. (The personal negotiations, however, were not as difficult as feared.)

47 There was occasional concern in the administration as to whether a chair was justified, however.

48 Precedents for VSA included NZUSA's existing Volunteer Graduate Scheme, and the more recently established American Peace Corps (1961) and Britain's Volunteer Service Overseas. Leslie Palmier was president for a few weeks before Aikman; former Students' Association president (then lawyer) Maurice O'Brien was also prominently involved; Tony Taylor and John McCreary set up VSA's selection system.

49 C. Aikman, Proposal for the establishment of a Pacific Studies Centre, 22 Apr. 1963, VC file 1203: box 1F, R95/ 20; R. Brookes, Comments on the proposal for reorganisation of Asian Studies, 31 Mar. 1963, VC file 747.

50 Meetings were held periodically to compare notes, but an early suggestion of dividing the territory up (geographically) among the universities did not find favour.

51 J.R. McCreary, Pacific Studies Committee: proposal to discharge the committee, Apr. 1979, VC file 1204: box 1F, R 95/20.

52 McCreary, Proposals for the development of Pacific Studies, 27 June 1973, VC file 1203.

53 Interview with Ian Gordon, 3 Oct. 1997.

54 N. Peat, The ELI is 25, Wellington, 1986, p.25.

55 Taylor, memo to deputy vice-chancellor, 4 Mar. 1974; Memorandum on conversation with Dr. Robson, deputy vice-chancellor, 15 Mar. 1974, VC file 2221: box 7D, R98/30.

56 J. Robson, An Institute of Criminology, 2 Apr. 1974, VC file 2221.

57 Minister of Justice to Taylor, 9 Aug. 1974, VC file 818: box 4F, R95/98. He also told Victoria that had the government known of its plans to establish an institute of criminology he would not have made available the $20,000 research grant in the way he had.

58 Ian Axford to G.L. Jackson, secretary of labour, 31 Oct. 1984, VC file 2276: box 7F, R98/38.

59 Young, Annual report of the Industrial Relations Centre, 1970–71, 20 Sept. 1971, VC file 880: box 5A, R95/ 107.

60 Young, The Industrial Relations Centre: what we have in mind, 24 Mar. 1970, VC file 884: box 5B, R95/108.

61 Taylor to J.C. Fletcher, 8 Nov. 1973, VC file 881: box 56B, R95/108.

62 J.P. Sage, memo for the vice-chancellor, 29 Sept. 1972; minutes of the first meeting of the Labour Archives Trust, 5 July 1973, VC file 887: box 5A, R95/107.

63 Industrial Relations Advisory Committee to the deputy prime minister, 4 Oct. 1976, VC file 882: box 5B, R95/ 108.

64 Woods to Prof. D. Sloan, Economics, 11 Feb. 1974, VC file 888: box 5B, R95/109.

65 K.B. O'Brien, chairman, Industrial Relations Advisory Committee to the minister of labour, 24 July 1975, VC file 883: box 5B, R95/108.

66 N.S. Roberts, acting director, Industrial Relations Centre, to J.W. Rowe, 2 Apr. 1984, VC file 2276: box 7F, R98/38. The 16-minute video was made for the Distribution Union and was about the effect on workers of the government wage freeze.

67 The Adult Education Act 1963 revised the functions of the National Council of Adult Education that had been established in 1947, leaving the universities free to construct adult education organisations as they thought fit. Factors in the trend for adult education to move closer to the work of universities – contrary to expectations of the 1947 act – were the development of manual and technical training in schools, and later the growth of the polytechnic sector. More generally, with the expansion of free state education, a class of the population for whom the WEA provided the education they had not had at school disappeared.

68 F. Holmes, Survey Research Centre, memo for Professorial Board, 8 June 1965, Professorial Board minutes, 1965, p.243.