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How's vice-chancellor still in his post at QUB?

The remarks made by QUB vice-chancellor Patrick Johnston have already passed into legend and will doubtless be kicked about the common room for years to come.

In a faux-pas of epic proportions, he trashed his university's humanities degrees with a crassness comparable with Gerald Ratner's "total c**p" remark about his own jewellery product in 1992.

But however risible it is to find that a man who claims to promote leadership and good citizenship at the head of a seat of learning can spectacularly display so little of those qualities himself in such a public way, it is dismaying that the institution has so little self-respect that the VC can happily expect to remain in post.

One other characteristic of non-academic life Mr Johnston might have cited was the brutal fact that a gaffe such as his in the private sector would lead to calls for his resignation.

Thanks for making the graduation ceremony for so many students in the coming weeks so very, very special, as well as expensive.



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