Thousands of students at Liaoning university rage against dormitory 'evictions' | South China Morning Post
  • Sun
  • Jan 25, 2015
  • Updated: 11:55am
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EDUCATION

Thousands of students at Liaoning university rage against dormitory 'evictions'

PUBLISHED : Monday, 30 June, 2014, 6:44pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 01 July, 2014, 7:18am

Thousands of students at a Liaoning university are up in arms against the school’s plan to allegedly force them out of their dormitories to make way for a larger number of entrants.

The mostly female students have accused Bohai University of “arbitrarily” ordering them to relocate far from their campus just off the Bohai Sea and live in poor accommodations they described as “shabby, damp” and crams eight students to a room.

They vented their fury on a Weibo page titled “10,000 Bohai University students relocating dormitories”, which has 30,000 member bloggers, most of them students.

Some blamed the “sudden” arrangement on the university’s acceptance of far more new students than it could accommodate. “Why does the school expand its enrolment even though it knows there isn’t room for it?” one student said.

Public information from Bohai University shows 5,576 first-year students are enroled this fall – 576 more than last year.

The university did not respond to phone calls today. But in an earlier statement on Sunday, the school confirmed it decided on the relocation plans after “careful consideration”.

Far from the grim descriptions by students, the university said the new dormitories were “four-student rooms with a balcony and lake view”.

“[The new dormitory] will be completely fit for accommodations by the time the school’s logistics department delivers it to students,” it promised.

It also pledged to “treat issues raised by students sincerely”.

But many disgruntled students argued that the school steamrolled the plan despite fierce opposition from the student body.

Other students accused school officials of attempting to silence dissenters by sending them warnings and even threatening to withhold their diplomas.

An unverified post purportedly sent by a teacher to students warned they would face consequences if they did not agree to the relocation.

“If anyone’s complaint influenced prospective students’ willingness to apply, I think you will be sorry for that,” the message, sent via instant-messenger QQ, stated, according to a saved screenshot of the conversation.

“[Protesting] will only hinder your prospect for a successful graduation,” it said.

As of MONDAY this afternoon, an online poll on the relocation found that 14,300 users were opposed, while 700 were in favour of the plan.

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