If...

April 17, 2014

If you can keep your head, when all about you
Are losing theirs because of QAA
If UEG cannot survive without you
With Provost, Deans and PVCs at play
If you can wait, and not be tired by waiting
Hoping one day Senate will decide
Or cope with Council endlessly berating
Without the urge to run away and hide

If you can REF, but not make REF your master
If rising up the rankings is your aim
If NSS is once again disaster
And everyone says you must be to blame
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
Misquoted by the folks at UCU
If all the staff say everything is broken
But rather than repair it, look at you

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
Then see that published in the THE
If student numbers suddenly are thinning
Or not enough have managed ABB
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
When jet-lagged at a campus overseas
Or always have the right quotation in you
When asked of Labour’s plan for £6K fees

If you can talk to Ministers with virtue
If Student Union reps pop in and chat
If rows with Deans of Faculty don’t hurt you
If Head of Legal says “You can’t do that”
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds fighting off adversity
Yours is this place, and every problem in it
You are the v-c of a university

Gavin Costigan
Director of the vice-chancellor’s office
University of Southampton

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