News - July 24, 2015

In hot pants in the classroom

I wind my fellow students up several times a week when I talk about school, class and classmates. It’s not that I’m deliberately being denigrating; I just find school and class easier to say than u-ni-ver-si-ty and lec-tures.

By Carina Nieuwenweg, student BSc Molecular Life Sciences

But it seems this is somehow heretical. Students start to huff and puff if I affectionately call them classmates. After all, our high school diplomas weren’t just dished up with the cornflakes. We worked hard for them, and they are a real achievement. Clearly the next step after high school is quite a thing. Something to be proud of. We’ve grown out of school, say the unwritten rules. OK, I get that. Sort of.

But what I really don’t get, what leaves me totally baffled, is the way the same classmates (or fellow students, as you wish) in whose eyes I brazenly offend their academic dignity when I talk about ‘going to class’ do not hesitate to parade around the university in extremely short shorts, flip-flops (or bare feet, also totally hot, apparently) and cropped tops and sweaters. Outfits I would consider more in place at a Going-to-Ibiza party. So how seriously are you taking the university then? There are enough other outfits in almost every style that are suitable for hot weather, but which don’t allow everybody to enjoy the sight of your cellulitis.

Sorry, but it still seems weird to me to be corrected for my school vocabulary by someone in short hipster pants. But then, even if she is very nearly walking around in her underwear, she is doing so at university and not at school! I have to admit that this strange phenomenon intrigues me. I have a theory about it. Might it not be the case that all students feel they have grown out of school by now? That they now amount to something in society, but that what they really want most is for the university not quite to be the big bad world yet. That there is one last staging post before things get really serious. Before the way you dress really has consequences.

Met dit blog doet Carina mee in de strijd om blogger te worden voor Resource.