Oh dear, as a result of some alleged occasional injuries, students at the University of East Anglia (UEA) have been urged not to throw their mortar boards into the air when they have their graduation photos taken.
Instead they have been asked to mime the throwing action instead, and have hats added digitally to the photo after. Oddly enough, it will cost an extra £8 to have a digital mortar board added to a photo!
The BBC reports that a university spokeswoman said injuries caused by falling mortarboards posed an "unacceptable risk".
Unacceptable to whom?
The students are the ones doing the throwing, and are in the line of fire. Let them determine if they want to take the "risk".
The spokesman went on to say:
"We want to ensure no student's graduation day is ruined by the potential for avoidable injury.Hah!
This has been agreed by our academic dress suppliers who often receive back damaged mortarboards, and our photographers."
The university said it had not introduced a specific policy banning the throwing of mortarboards, but instead had "asked our photography supplier not to encourage it during large group sessions".
The university spokeswoman said:
"The university accepts some people may still throw their hats. This is their choice and nothing will happen if they do."
So the university agrees with what I just said about letting students make the decision!
Just to remind you of a key point here, third and fourth-year students had been sent instructions from a photography company telling them hats could be added to the photo digitally for £8.
The Health and Safety Executive said the chance of being injured by a flying mortar board is "incredibly small".
"When the concern is actually about the hats being returned in good condition, it's time to stop blaming health and safety."Quite so!
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