Campus Watch

University of Sunderland Closes its History and Modern Language Faculties 

Image source: Newcastle Chronicle

The University of Sunderland has closed its history faculty after only receiving interest from 14 students who wanted to study the subject this year. 

The University has also announced that its modern languages department will also close after nobody enrolled for any of its courses. The number of universities offering modern foreign languages has dropped by 40% in the past 15 years, though this decline has also been seen at A-Level too. 

In addition, a combined history and politics degree will also no longer be an option after only 15 students signed up. 

Chairman of the university’s board of governors, John Mowbray, saidL “while recognising the value of the subjects the university is withdrawing from, the board of governors agreed that they do not fit with the curriculum principles of being career-focused and professions-facing.” 

It has been said that around 34 academic staff will reportedly be affected by the changes. 

The University has said that “work is under way to develop courses ‘that provide clear routes into employment.’

Amelia Cutting – News Editor

Students robbed while taking exam at Ghent University

The personal belongings of approximately eight students were stolen as bio-engineering students took an exam at the University of Ghent. 

According to the university, the property stolen included jackets, backpacks and laptops. The room where the belongings were left during the exams is not covered by CCTV. Therefore, the university’s administration team has requested that all students report anyone trying to sell what is perhaps stolen equipment. 

The university administration team have stated that students opted to not bring their belongings into the exam room themselves and were not told to do so. Students chose to leave their belongings outside to avoid being accused of cheating. 

Students affected have been advised by the university to submit formal police complaints and contact their insurance companies. The university has also informed their insurance company of the situation. Other students at the university have been advised to not leave valuables in unsupervised locations in a hope to avoid this situation from occurring again in the future. 

Charly Loughlin – News Editor

Hoax email sent to University of Southampton students informing them that exams have been cancelled

Screenshot of the email sent to students. Source: The Telegraph

On the 19th January, a hacker claiming to be Sir Christopher Maxwell Snowden, ex-vice chancellor of the University of Southampton, sent an email to all students, stating that their exams had been cancelled.

The email stated that due to “budget constraints”, the university was closing and current students would, therefore, be enrolled at Solent University for the next semester. Students were informed that the former vice-chancellor had “just got off the phone with the prime minister” and due to economic constraints as a result of Brexit, Southampton and 5 other UK universities were to be shut. 

The email went on to say, “As consolation I’ve decided to allow you all to forgo your January exams so get a massive sesh on!!”. The email is believed to have reached all 24,500 students currently enrolled at the university.

The university later stated that the email was, in fact, a hoax and that they are “treating the matter seriously”. They stated, “We want to reassure all of our students that this email is fake”, adding, “Our iSolutions team are working to track down the source of this e-mail and appropriate action will be taken”. 

Charly Loughlin – News Editor

Oxford Professor Angers Trans Activists

Professor of Modern History at the University of Oxford, Selina Todd, has come under fire from members of the trans community regarding her views on protecting cisgender women from transgender women.

Todd has been the subject of several online threats made against her by activists in the trans community and has subsequently told media outlets that she is now potentially “vulnerable” to physical attacks while at work.

During her lectures, the professor is reportedly being accompanied by two members of staff for her own security.

Todd has rejected her views as bigoted, stating that “democracy is under threat” around the world and that the backlash she has received undermines the democratic principle of all voices in society benefiting from freedom of speech. 

Elliott Hodgkin

Cheesy Bookmark Left as a Surprise for Fellow Student

A confused staff member at the University of Liverpool found a “disconcertingly warm and liquid” slice of cheese in a returned library book last week. The incident has provided the library staff with a gouda laugh. 

According to the university’s associate director, Alex Widdeson, the slice was discovered “somewhere between American history and geography”. 

The university was forced to inform students that cheese is, in fact, not a suitable alternative for a bookmark. 

Seeing the humorous side, the university shared a number of Tweets relating to the incident which has since been liked by over 215,900 Twitter users. The library jokingly said: “Me talking to the pest control man – “No mate I’ve no idea why we have mice in the library” *Picks up a book and actual cheese falls out of it*”.

According to the university, this is not the first time strange items have been found in the library. The other most recent food related offence was the use of an empty sandwich container as a makeshift bookend. 

Charly Loughlin – News Editor