UCLan Removes All Student Newspapers Criticising Job Cuts In Time For Open Day

A university removed student newspapers from corridors in time for an open day because the front page criticised the institution's job cuts and it didn't want prospective students to see the bad coverage.

The University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) held an open day on 30 November for students interested in enrolling at the institution. That same day, the student newspaper Pluto, which is run independently from the university, ran a front page splash calling the institution "outrageous".

Michael Bailey, media officer at UCLan SU, told HuffPost UK: "I was working the event as a Students’ Union representative and on getting into work at 9am I discovered all the papers had gone.

"As editor-in-chief I was angered by the university’s decision and posted what had happened on both Facebook and Twitter."

The controversial front page

Bailey added: "This led to a large backlash from students against the university who took over the hashtags #uclan #uclanopenday which were both being promoted by the university through the day for potential new students to send their tweets to."

Bailey continued: "The sustained criticism they were receiving forced them to turn off two Twitter walls they were running at the event.

"At the end of the day I witnessed university staff putting the newspapers back and me and several others also saw staff members consistently turning over newspapers that had been put back in some of the red drop bins by angry volunteers who came down to the Union after seeing the situation on social media."

A spokesperson for the university said: "UCLan actively supports a free press but equally it wishes to see accurate reporting. The newspapers were only removed from the main open day thoroughfare (we did not remove them from other university buildings ) for the duration of the event because the front page headline misrepresented the current situation at the university.

"Our development plans for the UK are entirely separate from our international operations and the change programme currently being undertaken at UCLan would have taken place regardless of our overseas strategy.

"The University has always maintained an open and constructive relationship with Pluto, the UCLan student newspaper, and we hope this will continue in the future.”

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