University tells women to wear ‘low-cut’ outfits to graduation

Belgian institution says message was ‘contrary’ to university’s values following outcry on social media

May 31, 2017
Brussels
Source: iStock

A Belgian university has apologised after female students were told to wear low-cut outfits to their graduation ceremony.

An email, which was sent to medical students at the Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB), said that “from an aesthetic point of view” it would be “preferable for the women to wear a dress or a skirt and a nice low neckline”. Male graduates, it said, could wear a suit.

“Of course, ladies, this advice is not obligatory,” it added.

The message was shared on the student Facebook page ULB Confessions and caused an outcry on social media.

One commenter posting under the image said: “Basically it means: ‘Women it’s good that you’re doctors, but what you have in you head doesn’t matter.’”

In a statement on its Facebook page, the university, on behalf of its medical faculty, gave its “sincerest apologies” to all students who had received the email and said that the instructions were “contrary to the values” of the institution. 

ellie.bothwell@timeshighereducation.com

You've reached your article limit.

Register to continue

Registration is free and only takes a moment. Once registered you can read a total of 3 articles each month, plus:

  • Sign up for the editor's highlights
  • Receive World University Rankings news first
  • Get job alerts, shortlist jobs and save job searches
  • Participate in reader discussions and post comments
Register

Have your say

Log in or register to post comments

Most Commented

James Fryer illustration (27 July 2017)

It is not Luddism to be cautious about destroying an academic publishing industry that has served us well, says Marilyn Deegan

Jeffrey Beall, associate professor and librarian at the University of Colorado Denver

Creator of controversial predatory journals blacklist says some peers are failing to warn of dangers of disreputable publishers

Hand squeezing stress ball
Working 55 hours per week, the loss of research periods, slashed pensions, increased bureaucracy, tiny budgets and declining standards have finally forced Michael Edwards out
Kayaker and jet skiiers

Nazima Kadir’s social circle reveals a range of alternative careers for would-be scholars, and often with better rewards than academia

hole in ground

‘Drastic action’ required to fix multibillion-pound shortfall in Universities Superannuation Scheme, expert warns