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Last week, Paul Hannah pointed out that the Management School seem to be receiving all the benefits of a tailored careers service delivered straight to the Management School building, while CEEC’s attention bypassed arts students. But the superior facilities at the disposal of the Management School don’t stop at just their employment resources. Yes, I’m talking about the Management School hoodies. Initially, I was confused when they popped up in the LUSU Shop. After a year of stewing, my feelings have become somewhat stronger.
Having a hoodie with Lancaster University Management School written on it is equivalent to buying a hoodie that says Lancaster University: The Better Part. This isn’t just a Lancaster University hoodie; this is a well funded and naturally superior Lancaster University Management School hoodie. It effectively devalues the worth of the rest of the University’s departments by pointedly elevating one to baggy-clothing status. Granted, the Management School is recognised for its excellence, but since when did we need this superiority rubbed in everyone else faces?
Of course, any university hoodie is naturally an assertion of superiority; if you were embarrassed about the university you attended, you wouldn’t wear a piece of clothing with its name obnoxiously blazoned across the front. The Management School just seems to be taking this a step further. Why bother identifying yourself with just a university when you can indicate you come from a specific department within it?
Perhaps every department should have personalised hoodies, just to ensure optimum tension between subjects. Then we can all walk around with our academic interests clearly displayed on our clothes. At least we’ll easily know who not to talk to.
University is a place where you can meet new people from different subjects, learn new things and go new places. This choice of branding hoodies as specifically relating to the Management School only serves to create arbitrary boundaries between students and promotes a conceited display of departmental snobbery.
If the Management School want to be so elitist, perhaps they should run an exclusive shop full of merchandise from its massive Batcave of mystery and leave the rest of us students wandering around in confused but equal bliss.