Award for professor who couldn’t read or write until he was 15

Here is a very interesting article about Prof Welby Ings:

By Nicholas Jones
5:30 AM Friday Nov 1, 2013

He was kicked out of secondary school and doesn’t believe students should receive marks.

Welby Ings has had an unusual progression from the King Country back blocks to being awarded his university’s highest academic honour.

The Professor of Design at Auckland University of Technology was the son of a shearing contractor, and could not read or write until he was 15.

After being expelled from secondary school, he would go on to get suspended from teachers college.

“It doesn’t look like a CV that you want to deal with,” he concedes.

“But I learned the value of questioning things. It took longer to learn the value of strategically questioning things.”

Before joining AUT in 1995, Professor Ings, 57, spent time working as a primary and secondary school teacher, and says a common realisation is that each intellect is different.

“Often we are trained to think in words. But some people don’t. Some people think in the most elegant and sophisticated level in images, or in space,” he says.

That realisation and a desire to challenge convention informs both his research and teaching now, for which he was last night awarded AUT’s inaugural University Medal, at the Vice-Chancellor’s Academic Excellence Awards.

Read the rest of the article here:


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