I was at a farewell reception on Tuesday afternoon for Professor Adrian Lee, Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Education and Quality Improvement). Unexpected, possibly, but the leaders and managers of all the UNSW student organisations were invited.
The point is, I only first set eyes on Professor Lee Monday last week, from the gallery at a meeting of Council. The first time I saw him where he would have had the opportunity to see me was only yesterday, at another meeting.
It gets better… at Monday’s meeting, I kept falling asleep during a presentation he was giving — yes, falling asleep, and I was sitting where he could constantly see me! You know, it’s not ‘cos it was uninteresting at all, but only because I was bloody tired from not having slept the night before (stayed up setting up a form on the COFA SA website for people collecting our 2006 diaries and stuff).
Being the President of COFA SA has meant I’ve met a few higher-ups in the University bureaucracy who I’ve only previously heard of by reputation. It’s rather daunting actually. It is exciting, finding out if people are as you’ve heard them described, but it’s certainly daunting too — you’ve always got to be careful and mindful that you’re representing COFA SA and COFA students.
I guess I just found it pretty surreal to end up at a farewell for somebody you haven’t met, and have only heard about in passing. COFA is a pretty cosy place and many students and staff certainly know each other.
So I at least stayed around to listen to the speeches, and Adrian seems to be a very nice guy, well liked by many at UNSW. I wonder if he remembered from Monday and would have very much liked it if I in fact wasn’t there? I did end up shaking his hand at the reception and wishing him well, but I didn’t introduce myself. That would just be weird, wouldn’t it? “Hi, nice to meet you… by the way, bye!”
Ah well… what’s the difference between a Pro-Vice-Chancellor and a Deputy Vice-Chancellor anyway?