'From an aesthetic point of view it's preferable if young women wear a nice low neckline'
Brussels Free University apologises for email encouraging low cut tops for female graduates. (Men could wear suits)
Thee university posted its “sincerest apologies” to Facebook and Twitter. File photograph: Chris Radburn/PA Wire
A university in Belgium has apologised after students were sent an email suggesting that women wear low-cut tops to their graduation ceremony.
The email advised that “from an aesthetic point of view, it is preferable if young women wear a dress or a skirt and a nice low neckline.” Male graduates, it said, could wear a suit.
The message came to light after it was posted on the ULB Confessions page on Facebook with the note “a little scandal”.
The post had more than 600 comments ranging from disbelief to anger, with several accusing the university of sexism.
“Is this a joke? They are graduates of medicine and we’re asking them to show their chest?” one commenter wrote.
Another wrote: “The dress I can understand but the ‘nice cleavage’ you got a Phd, but who cares, shows your nipples.”
As the outrage grew, and the story appeared in the Parisien newspaper, the university posted its “sincerest apologies” to Facebook and Twitter.
“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,” it said.