On Vice-Chancellors

Stuart McCutcheon, the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Auckland, `brief CV’ on the University of Auckland’s website gives his qualifications as:

Professor McCutcheon completed his Bachelors degree with first class honours at Massey University in 1976, and was then appointed to the position of lecturer while undertaking a PhD in metabolic physiology.

Metabolic physiology? I had been told it was a PhD on the actual freezing to death of new-born lambs. Luckily, the rumour, such as it was, seems like it might well be right; witness the Massey University library’s catalogue:

A study of some factors affecting the resistance of newborn lambs to cold-stress with particular reference to starvation and exposure mortality : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Animal Science at Massey University / Stuart Norman McCutcheon

I pass this one because I’ve been telling people that the rumour was that the Vice-Chancellor had the makings of ‘evil’ genius and it seems that, in our agriculturally-inclined country, that he does, in fact, have the makings.


About Matthew Dentith

Author of "The Philosophy of Conspiracy Theories" (Palgrave Macmillan), Matthew Dentith wrote his PhD on epistemic issues surrounding belief in conspiracy theories. He is a frequent media commentator on the weird and the wonderful, both locally and internationally. On occasion he can be caught dreaming about wax lions but, mostly, it is rumoured he works for elements of the New World Order.

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