“Frankly, it’s common theft.”
That was the reaction of our Head of Economics, Murray Bund, to the news that Edinburgh Napier University will have dogs sitting in when conducting interviews for its veterinary schools, a move that it hopes will help to relax the student applicants.
Professor Bund told our reporter Keith Ponting (30) that Edinburgh Napier had “clearly misappropriated” this notion from his own long-standing practice of always having two hedge fund managers sitting in the room when interviews were being conducted with student applicants to his Economics Department.
“We regard the presence of these hedge fund managers as critical,” explained Professor Bund. “They accustom prospective students to the idea that they will be embarking on a course in economics that, in common with other leading UK courses in the subject, amounts to little more than an extended vindication of contemporary capitalism.”
According to figures issued by the Council for Advancement and Support of Education in Europe, Poppleton University is one of the UK universities with a fundraising operation that spends an average of nearly £17 for every £1 that it actually raises.
However, the portly head of our Fundraising Department, Mr Les Onions, told The Poppletonian that this figure was “seriously misleading” in that it ignored the fact that a great deal of the work carried out by himself and his 32 colleagues involved “softening up potential benefactors” and was therefore essentially “future-oriented”.
A typical scenario, for example, might involve taking a potential benefactor out for an expensive meal during which the fundraiser would outline the distinctive merits of Poppleton University. Again, in a typical scenario, the meal would end with the potential benefactor explaining that, on the whole, he’d rather give his money to a donkey sanctuary.
But the existence of such a contact represented “funding potential” and meant that he and his team could look forward to the day when the cumulative effect of such expensive meals would be evident from the arrival of what higher education fundraisers liked to call “The Golden Mean”: that “magical moment” when the cost of raising £1 for the university was exactly £1.
Maggie, Maggie, Maggie
Our only remaining radical academic, Ted Odgers of the Department of Media and Cultural Studies, has been roused by Martin McQuillan’s recent Times Higher Education article lamenting the lack of radical behaviour by today’s students.
Mr Odgers believes that this lack is due largely to the fact that today’s students have not mastered the radical tactics that were second nature to their late-1960s counterparts. He aims to remedy this deficiency with several new courses. The first, on the practice of Radical Chanting, will include the following elements: Chanting in unison. Chanting while walking. Starting a chant of your own. Knowing when to stop a chant.
Students will have to show a working knowledge of the following chants:
“No ifs, no buts, no education cuts”
“David Cameron, on your bike – what we need’s a general strike”
“Tory scum, here we come. Tory scum, your time has come.”
Mr Odgers envisaged that future courses would cover such other essential matters as Theory and Practice of Occupations and Sit-Ins, and the very best way to knot a Che Guevara headband.
Thought for the week
(contributed by Jennifer Doubleday, Head of Personal Development)
Jennifer Doubleday is on a Dying Awareness Course. If you’re not sufficiently aware of your own death, please make sure to contact her when she returns to campus.