Russell Group: Suits you, Sir

March 22, 2012

Our vice-chancellor has announced that he "perfectly understands" the reasoning that has led the universities of Exeter, Durham, York and Queen Mary, University of London to abandon their current membership of the 1994 Group in favour of joining the Russell Group.

Although Poppleton itself had opted to stay outside the Russell Group during the current millennium, the vice-chancellor told our reporter Keith Ponting that he "very much respected" the assertion by former 1994 Group member Sir Steve Smith that the Russell Group had become "a more natural fit" after the government's AAB policy "changed the debate".

This "more natural fit" was, he believed, an allusion by Sir Steve to the higher-quality bespoke suits worn by vice-chancellors in the Russell Group as opposed to the scruffier off-the-peg garments favoured by members of the 1994 Group.

It was also, said our vice-chancellor, an indication that Sir Steve and the vice-chancellors of Durham, York and Queen Mary would feel more "naturally fitted" to the elegant serenity of the Athenaeum Club than they were to the somewhat less salubrious 1994 Group meeting room above the Dog and Strumpet public house.

But perhaps, concluded our vice-chancellor, what was most "naturally fitting" about the Russell Group was the opportunity it provided for Sir Steve and his colleagues to join a privileged cabal where they would be able to talk without fear of contradiction about how Les Ebdon had gone "well over the top" in his commitment to widening access.

It's no go the logo

Roger Placement, our Deputy Director of Logo Development, has vigorously denounced all those members of university staff who have "flagrantly breached the logo utilisation pro forma".

He particularly selects those who have issued communications that either omit the university's leaping unicorn logo or use it inappropriately.

"All staff", he writes, "should know that our logo of a unicorn leaping above the Latin phrase Finem Respice ("Going Forward") must always appear in correspondence at either the top left or bottom left of the document and when used on A4 paper should be precisely 65mm wide."

To aid understanding of this point, Mr Placement has provided three illustrations, which we reproduce above.

Mr Placement also wishes to remind staff of the following university regulation: "Under no circumstances should any member of staff ever recreate, recolour, cut up, compress, stretch or amend our logo.

"Remember that our logo represents us to the wider world. It is our visual identity, a way of creating a state of affairs in which ordinary members of the public automatically think of Poppleton University whenever they encounter a leaping unicorn."

Thought for the week

(contributed by Jennifer Doubleday, Head of Personal Development)

Please note that Question 43 in the "Confidence and Self-Assurance" section of the 26-page "Health and Happiness" questionnaire distributed to all staff earlier this week mistakenly included the word "leg". The question should obviously have read "How often do you succeed in getting your point over?"

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