Don't brand school 'Augusta'

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I disagree with the Augusta Chronicle editorial (“Name-brand quality,” May 27) that favors including “Augusta” in the name of the university that will be formed by merging Augusta State University and Georgia Health Sciences University.

Including “Augusta” in the name of the newly merged university would be of little to zero positive impact.

If Augusta were widely associated, historically, with some inspirational ideal such as a noble cause (as are Boston and Philadelphia in the nation’s founding), a well-respected figure (Washington), relentless progress (Atlanta, Los Angeles, et al.), high academic pursuit (Cambridge, Mass.) or grand enterprise (New York City, Chicago), then including “Augusta” would make sense.

There is nothing of the sort. Intransigence comes to mind, if anything. The stupefying complaints about GHSU President Ricardo Azziz, a forward thinker, are a good example of the mentality accompanying this history. He must feel like a “stranger in a strange land” sometimes.

The new university, from day one, will be competing with leading universities that already have history and opinion working in their favor. The new name should primarily inspire those who are directly involved with academia and its output. Those would be academic opinion leaders, academic organizations, media, researchers, research grantors, professors, patrons, underwriting officials, officers of industry (the talent market) and students.

The stature of the new university will depend on these, not sentimental locals who have little stake in what goes on there. Most of the movers and shakers who will have an impact on the university’s stature will have no emotional tie to Augusta. They will not be impressed by seeing “Augusta” in the new name because of the golf tournament. Golf is a second-tier sport, anyway.

Some who read this undoubtedly will hit the ceiling like Yosemite Sam. My words, irrespective of rationale, will be perceived as an insult. Pride, that most godless and destructive of human emotions, will rear its ugly head. Someone, though, has to be objective. Deeper thought is required here. After all, a goldfish in a bowl, if it could speak, would speak proudly of its bowl, oblivious to the estate in which the bowl is housed.

The city name is best left to grade-schools, businesses and civic organizations, not a university looking to take a leading role in academia. Surely, there are more substantial names that will better suit this objective.

I hope that the decision-makers can resist this watery-eyed sentimentality, and that the natural impulse to name the school after our town will not prevail.

Stuart Crosby

Grovetown

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specsta
6592
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specsta 06/07/12 - 01:02 am
2
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Moving Forward

Thank you, Mr. Crosby. What a great letter!

Craig Spinks
817
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Craig Spinks 06/07/12 - 03:13 am
4
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A Strange Land

Mr. Crosby,

My Hometown is "a strange land" where courage is in the shortest supply.

burninater
9680
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burninater 06/07/12 - 03:23 am
6
3
Respect runs both ways. If

Respect runs both ways. If the combined university achieves a level of prestige and has "Augusta" in the name, it can confer the very clout that Augusta as a town (sorry folks) currently lacks.

JohnBrownAug
1962
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JohnBrownAug 06/07/12 - 04:44 am
8
2
What a strange and rambling

What a strange and rambling letter. The writer has no sense of the history of Augusta. I encourage him to read more. This will be a new university and that means the reputation will grow with time and its accomplishments. It took a while before Harvard was well known. Does he think any new university instantaneously gained notoriety? Chicago? Haha.

Gage Creed
17851
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Gage Creed 06/07/12 - 06:35 am
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Sounds like Stuart Crosby

Sounds like Stuart Crosby maybe a "Grateful Mother". Mr. Crosby, blind subservience is not a good look.

Iwannakno
1533
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Iwannakno 06/07/12 - 07:53 am
1
0
Preference
Unpublished

I prefer "Cool School"

Just My Opinion
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Just My Opinion 06/07/12 - 09:53 am
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I think this letter was very

I think this letter was very well written and makes the writer's point extremely well. Those of you who may be offended by it, seriously, read it again and read it WITHOUT emotion. You will see it makes more sense than you first thought. As for me, I didn't really care if "Augusta" was in the new name or not, but now I can see how it's not a good idea, but only because it doesn't serve a "branding" purpose. BTW, I enjoyed the "goldfish" analogy...that could be used in many facets of our lives.

Fiat_Lux
15890
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Fiat_Lux 06/07/12 - 10:16 am
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Really,

You should move, Mr. Crosby.

And nice comments, Burninater (as usual) and JohnBrownAug.

IMO, the key for Dr. Azziz in leading MCG/GHSU/ASU to the success he envisions is not limited to bringing in other forward-thinking movers and shakers. He (and they) should not just clear-cut the landscape they're building on, figuratively speaking, but should allow what's already here, including it's historical identity, to influence and impact both the ultimate result and, possibly as important, the style and method with which it is brought about.

This is not Boston or Chicago, thank the Lord. And it is not Atlanta. And we Augustans are very proud of MCG and ASU, and always have been. My own family has had MCG graduates since the 1880s. We are very supportive of every attempt to improve those institution(s), building on the accomplishments that already have been made--and they are numerous, despite what some believe.

We do not, however, care to have those institutions ripped out of our community's identity and transformed into something largely unrecognizable as "Augustan", even if the intent and result is greater renown.

It is very important, no matter how backward this seems to many poorly-informed people, to understand that Augusta is a Southern city. It is essential to understand what it means to be trying to accomplish something in the South, especially for a non-Southerner. There is a way to build support and there is a way to create the kind of resistance that ultimately grinds things to a halt.

So far, things appear to be moving forward, but a word of warning: It all can change on a dime if the top guns imported to make the transformation really "pop" decide they can simply run over us like we don't we don't matter, except as tools for their agenda.

eb97
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eb97 06/07/12 - 10:11 am
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Dr. Azziz

Dr. Azziz is the only leader I see that can think outside the box. I believe he will make Augusta into the city that becomes a great place to go to school, go for entertainment and for vacation attractions. This man is not only an innovator, he is a doer. This is what Augusta needs, a person with a plan that actually executes the plan.

chrissy921
12
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chrissy921 06/07/12 - 11:44 am
3
2
Good reading

That was a great analogy of the cities, Stuart. And I don't think you need to move. As an Augustan, you totally changed my perspective on what the school name should be. I think it should be named after an important historical figure from this area or CSRA University.

JohnBrownAug
1962
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JohnBrownAug 06/07/12 - 01:08 pm
2
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I bet the letter writer

I bet the letter writer really loves where he lives...Grovetown.

LocalLawyer
317
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LocalLawyer 06/07/12 - 01:42 pm
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Name Change

I like Walton & Wheeler Univ.

David Parker
7923
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David Parker 06/07/12 - 04:16 pm
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Groovytown University be ok

Groovytown University be ok with you mr Crosby?

Take some pride in our city and think confidently upon the merger and how it will improve this area. They could name it something to make it more generic, disassociate itself from Augusta. They could drop another name in there and make it sexy even. But I like Augusta and I'm not ashamed of our obscurity, so put the flippin city name in the school name and to heck with everyone else.

That was directed at you Dr. Z

David Parker
7923
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David Parker 06/13/12 - 11:16 am
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3
Golf

"Golf is a second-tier sport, anyway."

For the moment sir, for the moment.

update:
never knew Augusta contained 3 golf haterz ... sheez!

Little Lamb
46850
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Little Lamb 06/07/12 - 05:38 pm
1
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CSRU

Welcome to the forums, Chrissy. I think you are headed in the right direction. Only, instead of CSRA University, it could be shortened to

Central Savannah River University

CSRU

JohnBrownAug
1962
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JohnBrownAug 06/07/12 - 06:19 pm
1
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Some want to camoflauge where

Some want to camouflage where the school is. But the truth is it's in downtown Augusta, GA, for better or worse. Let's get past the pettiness and get on with the merged university that will turn the former ASU into something that will make their degrees much valued.

As a total aside, The Masters is arguably the world's biggest sporting event. It's often debated with the World Cup and the Super Bowl for the number one spot. What sets it above the others, is the economic level of our fans. It's kind of fun to look up this debate online and see just how high WE are ranked. It will surprise you. Number One in many polls.

Bizkit
32852
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Bizkit 06/07/12 - 06:11 pm
1
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Why not Georgia Arts and

Why not Georgia Arts and Sciences University-Augusta campus. Because it will likely expand (especially medical) to other cities such as Columbus or Valdosta so then GASU-Columbus campus, GASU-Valdosta campus. A web of education opportunities and pooling all the research potential across the state. I can see Azziz thinking more global as I suggest because it will create a larger pool of researchers with various expertise and interest as well as education opportunities for a larger pool of students.

JohnBrownAug
1962
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JohnBrownAug 06/07/12 - 06:18 pm
1
1
About this letter, know what

About this letter, know what else bothers me, it's just rude. I lived in lots of places in the Army, Hinesvilles, GA and Daleville, AL to name a couple. Big cities with crime, too. I had a drug dealer slammed on the hood of my car while I was at a stoplight in Wash.,D.C. But you know what, I never slammed the communities I lived in.

I always found positives and tried to be part of the community and enjoy what they had to offer. I fished in some areas, hunted in others, enjoyed other things in some. You can always find something you like and not criticize unless it's done in constructive ways.

JohnBrownAug
1962
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JohnBrownAug 06/07/12 - 06:21 pm
1
0
Bizkit, because by using the

Bizkit, because by using the "Augusta campus" term, it implies it's somewhere else bigger. Do you see Duke saying Duke campus Durham? Harvard Cambridge?

Carleton Duvall
6305
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Carleton Duvall 06/07/12 - 06:52 pm
1
0
Junior College of Augusta

The name of the school was Junior College of Augusta when it was split off from the Academy of Richmond County in 1925. Augusta has been part of the name ever since. I see no reason to change it now.

Bizkit
32852
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Bizkit 06/07/12 - 06:59 pm
1
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I disagree education and

I disagree education and especially research is changing and we need to able to exploit all of Georgia research potential as a primary goal-that's where the funds are, and then education rides on the backside of the research. Georgia needs a Stroke and Cancer Center because we are in the stroke belt and belt for certain cancers too. The ole days are gone-believe me I lament their loss too-so it is now like a business model with biotechnology, education, and research. Georgia research is the driving force for education, researchers including students will aid the student and the state, researchers can bring in the funds for students and to offset school costs, research is the key. We need to be smart to educate people for georgia jobs in the STEM fields.

david jennings
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david jennings 06/07/12 - 07:31 pm
1
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I agree with the letter

I agree with the letter writer 100%, and I don't understand why so many are negative about Dr. Azziz. Forget soapy, fiat, john brown,cage creed and the likes. Thank you Mr. Crosby, you said it so well.

JohnBrownAug
1962
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JohnBrownAug 06/07/12 - 08:16 pm
1
1
Well, Forget you too. Heh

David Jennings said, "I agree with the letter writer 100%, and I don't understand why so many are negative about Dr. Azziz. Forget soapy, fiat, john brown,cage creed and the likes."

Forget you too, David Jennings. You don't like Augusta, go make your own city.

Old Timmer
260
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Old Timmer 06/07/12 - 09:07 pm
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Cluless

This is all very sad.

Fiat_Lux
15890
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Fiat_Lux 06/08/12 - 10:36 am
1
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No, it's not sad.

It's normal, semi-intelligent debate. There's lots of disagreement about MCG/ASU/GHSU, El Presidento Azziz and Augusta in general. Sometimes it is even useful and instructive, even though not all of us are nice.

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