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Committee makes recommendation on university name

Ref. No. 107

DATE:     Mar. 6, 2002
SUBJECT:     Committee makes recommendation on university name

An ad hoc committee of the Board of Regents has made a recommendation that the name of the university be shortened to Memorial University. The official name of the university is currently Memorial University of Newfoundland. The committee was struck by board chairman Edward Roberts in response to a request from the provincial government to provide advice on the future of the university's name in light of the recent change in the official name of the province to Newfoundland and Labrador. The committee included representatives of students, faculty, staff, alumni and the Board of Regents.

Since January the committee has consulted widely inside and outside the university. "We received 75 responses to our call for input, with the vast majority of these recommending the name be shortened to Memorial University," said Mr. Roberts. "There was strong consensus within the committee that the submissions we received were representative of opinions on the issue. Our recommendation of the name Memorial University was a unanimous decision."

Mr. Roberts said the committee is now seeking opinion on this decision. "We wish to gather further input into the proposed name change and, essentially, to gauge the opinion of the public in regard to changing the university's name to Memorial University." The committee will also be specifically seeking the opinion and advice of the Royal Canadian Legion on the matter. "The university was founded as a memorial to the men and women of Newfoundland and Labrador who served in war and, more recently, peace-keeping operations. The opinion of our veterans is very important to us," said Mr. Roberts.

Any opinions, suggestions or comments should be forwarded by March 15, 2002, to the committee, c/o Eleanor Bennett, secretary, Board of Regents, Memorial University, St. John's, A1C 5S7, by e-mail eleanorb@mun.ca, or call 707-737-8281.

Mr. Roberts said the committee will ultimately provide recommendations to the Board of Regents, and the Board will provide its advice to the provincial government. It will be up to the government to decide how to proceed from there.

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