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Massey Magazine Issue 13 November 2002

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North Shore City (Albany)
Palmerston North

Professor Ian WatsonFarewell to Prof Watson

It’s been a busy month for foundation Albany principal Ian Watson. His attendance was most definitely required at farewell events held at Palmerston North and Albany, marking his formal retirement after 33 years with the University.

At the Academic Board farewell on 20 August, the many tributes paid included an address by Professor Robert Anderson, Pro Vice-Chancellor of the College of Sciences:

“ Ian Watson has not only ‘made a genuine difference’ to this University (and a very big difference at that), but also, he epitomises those fundamental human qualities of honesty, integrity, loyalty, humility and above all, service beyond self. His passion for, and dedication to, advancing the best interests of Massey University and all that it stands for during the past 33 years is remarkable.”

In closing, Professor Anderson said “I can think of no more appropriate – and deserved – accolade than to say ‘When I think of him in the years ahead I will be reminded that, as founding Principal at Albany, Ian was to that campus in the 90s all that Sir Geoffrey Peren was to Massey Agricultural College in the 30s, 40s and 50s.’ ”

Ian and Patsy Watson During August Professor Watson was also honoured by the American Chambers of Commerce, with whom he has been associated since 1997. At a special awards function, Amcham named him Member of the Year. Executive director Mike Hearn listed his many contributions to Amcham, noting that at the same time he had been busy growing an outstanding institution with 4300 students, “from grassy fields back in 1993”.

Mr Hearn said Professor Watson’s vision and personality have had a profound effect on the future of many young people, with the campus at the forefront of new ideas, including the establishment of one of the first technology clusters in New Zealand.

“ On top of this they have acres of spare land to expand in the future, something other universities would die for.

“There are very few academics who manage to keep my attention span for very long. However, I always enjoy listening to our winner. As the dyslexic Jim Hopkins said at the recent graduation dinner - Forp, you are a legend.”

Professor Watson chatting with Barrie MacDonald, PVC College of HumanitiesProfessor Watson will be back in his usual place at the Albany campus from next month until the appointment of a successor, under the new title of Deputy Vice-Chancellor – Auckland.

Prof. Watson Pictured with family members

Profs. Nigel Long, Ian Watson and Stuart McCutcheon

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