The THES Diary

May 14, 1999

Poor quality abuse

The Association of University Teachers Scotland decided to make a high-profile splash in the new devolved Scotland with a full-colour advertisement in one of the Scottish papers. The result has not been entirely positive: one reader has emailed the union to say: "You should be ashamed of the phrase 'attracting quality jobs to Scotland'. My local shop keepers think 'quality' is an adjective, but university professionals really ought to know better and recognise a noun when they see one."

You just want my brain

Are you a lecturer looking for lurve? You are in luck. A survey by dating agency Club Sirius shows teachers and lecturers to be the most popular dates. One male lecturer recently had a dozen females queuing to go out with him. It is not the pay that attracts them, but the conferences. Lecturers' knowledge of different places and cultures, and their wide reading, make them irresistible.

Prize, surprise...

The THES was pleased to be the bearer of good news to so many of this week's Joint Infrastructure Fund winners, a number of whom knew nothing of their success in the competition until long after the press embargo had gone. It appears that coordination between the Wellcome Trust and the research councils, which worked on the scheme together, did not go as far as notifying all the winners. Let us hope there was more coordination when it came to deciding the winners and administering the large sums of money involved.

Tails on the riverbank

Sections of London's enterprising rat population apparently want to widen their participation in the University of East London's impressive new Docklands Campus. The university's gleaming Pounds 40 million campus, which sits on the edge of the Royal Albert Dock, has already proved popular with dock-dwelling rodents scavenging for food scraps left by builders. Even greater rewards await them with the arrival of 2,400 students in September, when the campus opens. With usual standards of student appetites and hygiene expected among the 380 students in self-catering halls on site, UEL may be looking to hire its own ratcatcher. Hard-up students looking for work, watch this space.

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