Recently, a Belgian University apologised to the students for circulating an email suggesting as a dress code all the girls wear low-cut tops during their Graduation Ceremony.
The matter came to light after the ULB Confessions page on Facebook highlighted the text with a note which said “a little scandal.”
The message was circulated online by the medical faculty of Brussels Free University. After a huge social media outrage, the message of apology was posted on Facebook by The Brussels Free University for offending the female students. The email which was circulated suggested
“…from an aesthetic point of view, it is preferable if young women wear a dress or a skirt and a nice low neckline,” while the male graduates were asked to wear a suit.
Around 600 comments were posted in response to the post all of which expressed anger of students and accused the University of being sexist.
One of the comments said, “Is this a joke? They are graduates of medicine and we’re asking them to show their chest?”
The students disbelieved the idea of University asking women graduates to wear low-cut tops. The other comments read, “The dress I can understand but the ‘nice cleavage’ you got a PhD, but who cares, shows your nipples.”
The story was published in the Parisien newspaper. After such a huge chaos, the University apologised the students by posting their ‘sincere apologies’ on Facebook and Twitter.The apology said,
“It goes without saying that the instructions related to the clothing of young graduates are contrary to the values of the ULB and this faculty.”
Back home in India the scene is not very different. Many professional colleges and universities have been trying to impose a dress code for female students. Many colleges have a different dress code for girls and boys. College hostels have curfew hours for women.
Mount Carmel PU College in Bengaluru has defined Salwar Kameez, jeans with long kurtas or three-fourths that are below knee-length as acceptable dresses for female students. Sleeveless tops, tight fitted T-shirts, low waist jeans, deep necked and transparent tops have been banned by the college administration.
Priyanka Parthasarthy who is a History graduate from Presidency College in Chennai says,”There were some specific restrictions in our college. My friend was once asked to leave the classroom because she had been wearing a skirt.”
We believe that everyone should have access to choice.
Pic Credit: anu.edu.au