Renaming of Academic Institutions

Note: At its meeting on February 25, 2004, the Vancouver Senate accepted the following recommendations made by the Academic Policy. The full text of the Committee's report appears in the Minutes of Senate. The version below has been edited by the Senate Secretariat for clarity and consistency of format.

  1. Requests from units seeking to change from one type of academic entity to another type of academic entity (e.g., school to faculty, faculty to school, centre to school, etc.) that have implications with respect to academic governance and the provisions of the University Act should be reviewed by the [Vancouver Senate] Academic Policy Committee. Academic institutions include, inter alia, faculties, schools, libraries, programs, centres and institutes;
  2. The announcement of any new name resulting from such a change should take place after discussion with the Academic Policy Committee, and approval by the Board of Governors and the ad hoc committee referenced in Policy 124.
  3. In recognition of the sensitivity and potential complexity of the naming of academic institutions or units, Senate encourage the President, in the context of Policy 124, to include members of the Senate Tributes Committee as part of the ad hoc committee to be consulted.

    That is, in the context of Policy 124, Part III: Naming of Academic Institutions, penultimate paragraph: "The President shall then consult with an "ad hoc committee", which shall include the appropriate Dean(s) where relevant, the administrative head of the academic institution in question; the Chair of the Academic Policy Committee, and such other members as the President shall designate."

  4. 4In addition, the Senate recommends that the following guidelines be used by the ad hoc committee designated in Policy 124 in reviewing proposals to rename "academic institutions."

Guidelines for Renaming Proposals

At the meeting of the ad hoc committee where such a matter would be discussed, the Head of the Unit that wished to rename itself should make a presentation. That presentation should address the following issues:

  1. What would the extra money associated with this renaming be used to do? How would this extra money be used to address matters related to one or more of the pillars of TREK 2000 or 2010? How do these extra resources address the University's mission statement?
  2. The appropriateness of the renaming, i.e., the characteristics of potential "name." Should such names be those of former Chancellors or Presidents or major figures in the province or country? Clearly the members of the Tributes Committee have developed expertise in this domain.
  3. The extent to which members of the unit (faculty, students, department heads, etc.) have been consulted with respect to the possibility of a renaming and a summary of their responses.
  4. The extent to which this renaming is reflective of naming practices at other Universities.
  5. Finally, is this change consistent with the University Act? Have any issues related to such matters been resolved?

This information is for quick reference. For the full text of the Minutes of Senate, which include the motions and discussion, please see the Minutes Archive.