Bad vibrations

August 14, 2008

In these days of marketing and competition for students, it is inevitable that Britain's universities will produce glossy material and state-of-the-art websites in the attempt to steal a march on their competitors. However, I would just like to point out that one particular adjective is used ad nauseam: vibrant. Here are just a few examples accessed in ten spare minutes from university websites:

- We are a vibrant, innovative University dedicated to pursuing excellence ... (University of Teesside).

- Heriot-Watt is a vibrant, forward-looking University ... (Heriot-Watt University)

- The city of Bristol is not only one of the most vibrant and exciting cities in Britain ... (University of Bristol)

- Plymouth: a vibrant city ... (University of Plymouth)

- 16,000 students make up the University's vibrant cultural mix ... (Staffordshire University)

And of course it would be possible to quote examples ad infinitum. Perhaps Universities UK or the British Government should issue a press release explaining that all the nation's universities - and the towns and cities where they are located - are "vibrant". That way the universities themselves would no longer need to go to the trouble of pointing it out.

Brian Poole, Singapore.

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