Nieuw: Column James Young
Abandoned as an infant high in the mountains of Colorado, James was taken in and raised by a family of marmots. They trained him in the art of satire, but warned him: ‘With great power comes great responsibility.’ He didn’t understand the truth of their words until his adopted rodent brother, Donald Trump’s hair, turned to the dark side.
James could only sit by and watch, helpless and appalled, as his evil brother meme’d his way to the White House. Forever changed by what he had seen, James fled to The Netherlands and vowed to always use his powers for good.
The Nederlands-Vlaamse Accreditatieorganisatie (NVAO) published a harsh critique of the university this past week. Their representatives covertly visited the campus, and were appalled to find hundreds of illiterate students, unable to even read the signs outside of the UB.
‘The fact that these students were admitted in the first place is puzzling’, said NVAO in the critique. ‘But the situation becomes downright disturbing when one considers that the RUG appears to be doing absolutely nothing to aid them.’
When asked for comment the administration promised that steps were being taken to remedy the situation, though conceded that prior to the NVAO report they were ‘unaware’ of the scope of the problem.
As part of their solution administration has decided to make remedial language classes in both Dutch and English available to all students in the upcoming academic year. These will be mandatory for those who are found to not know how to read at all.
A phenomena of academic interest
Members of the administration weren’t the only ones to take an interest in the NVAO report. Its release saw a flurry of activity among media studies students and professors.
‘It’s incredible,’ said an art student. ‘It’s unprecedented to have this many people who qualify as not only regularly illiterate, but semiotically illiterate as well. Along with bathroom signs, the ‘no smoking’ symbol is one of the most widely recognised symbols in the world today.’
Contrary to NVAO recommendations, semioticians on staff have pleaded with administration not to intervene with the illiterate students so that they might be studied further.