University chief quits after degree inquiry

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The Independent Online
A university college chief investigated after questions were raised about his full list of qualifications has resigned, it was disclosed last night.

Dr Duane Arnold, a 43-year-old Episcopalian minister, has returned to the United States, after two years as principal of St Chad's at Durham University.

However, there is no suggestion that doubts raised about two of the qualifications listed in entries in academic directories and Who's Who made him ineligible for the pounds 40,000-a-year post.

According to university sources, he was sufficiently qualified without this pair of "credits" - a Master of Divinity from Philadelphia in the US in 1982 and a theology diploma from Cambridge University in 1983.

There is no Philadelphia University and Cambridge University said it had no record of the diploma he is listed as having received.

However, there is no question about his BA degree from New York University in 1979, his MA from Concordia University in 1981 and his PhD from St Chad's, Durham, in 1989, just five years before he returned as principal.

Dr Arnold, who has been on leave of absence since November while the investigation has proceeded, has insisted the inaccuracies were due to clerical errors. His wife Janet, who worked at the university as part- time director of development, has left her post to return to the US with him.

A university spokesman said the Rev Arthur Middleton, rector of Boldon on Tyneside, had been appointed acting principal until September.