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Massey boss quits over sexist comment

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 14/12/2016 Sean Martin
Massey University © SNPA Massey University

Massey University chancellor Chris Kelly has stepped down after suggesting female veterinarians are only worth about two-fifths of their male counterparts.

Mr Kelly came under fire following the comments to the publication Rural News, where he said while women were dominating the early years of their qualifications, they didn't stay long.

"The problem is one woman graduate is equivalent to two-fifths of a full-time equivalent vet throughout her life because she gets married and has a family, which is normal. So, though we're graduating a lot of vets, we're getting a high fallout rate later on," he told the paper.

On Wednesday, Mr Kelly, who had apologised for the comment, announced his resignation, which would be effective immediately.

"Having had time to carefully consider the views of many staff, students and stakeholders, I believe that it is in the interests of the university that I step aside."

Mr Kelly worked as a vet and for 12 years headed the state-owned enterprise Landcorp before his retirement in 2013. This year he was made an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to agriculture.

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