MORE than 2000 people have signed a petition to stop Charles Sturt University altering its name.
The change.org petition was started by alumni of the institution which has campuses in Albury and Wagga.
It follows CSU’s vice-chancellor of students Jenny Roberts saying a shift to Sturt University was being considered as part of a brand refresh to mark the school’s 30th anniversary this year.
The preamble to the online petition states “changing the name from CSU to SU erodes the identity, tradition and history of the previous generations who have attended, studied and worked at Charles Sturt University”.
Many signatories slammed it as a waste of money, while one declared “the removal of Charles is another effort to demasculize (sic) society”.
Husband and wife Syed Haris Omar and Saba Nabi, who earned PhDs in biomedical science from Wagga, put their names to the call.
“I think 99.9 per cent of everyone, alumni and staff, do not want the name change,” Dr Omar said.
“There is a hassle with documentation and it is a hassle for everyone that’s graduated from this university.
“Why should every alumni have to face this?”
Dr Nabi said there were better ways to refresh the brand.
“You can always do rebranding by putting in more staff,” Dr Nabi said.
“You can use your own students as (brand) ambassadors rather than change the name of the uni, which is a costly affair.”
The couple pointed to research funding and publications determining a university’s ranking more than a new name.
Albury CSU historian Associate Professor Bruce Pennay said “a lot of universities are two words” such as Monash and Sydney and “I see nothing wrong with Sturt University”.
CSU is not the only university in Australia with a first and surname in its title, Charles Darwin, James Cook and Edith Cowan also lend their names in the same way.
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