Relaxation of restrictions on LUMS Convocation Day 2017
Statement and Petition from the #LUMS Class Of 2017 (Graduating Batch) Regarding Arrangements Of The 29th Annual LUMS Convocation
To the Honorable Office Bearers of the LUMS Adminstration,
In light of uncountable individual requests made to the Administration and the subsequent unaccommodating attitude the entire Graduating Batch has had to face, We, the Class of 2017, see it unavoidable to reach a solution to our problems under the current circumstances, and therefore are making a collective request to institute resolutions to the problems which have been repeated highlighted over the past few weeks.
Full-text of Statement/Petition
To the Honorable Office Bearers of the LUMS Administration,
We are writing this email to register a strong collective protest of the student body against the arrangements made for Convocation 2017. We the students believe, the invitation of the Honorable President of Pakistan by this administration has completely compromised the entire ceremony. The student body unanimously is in agreement that the entire administrative machinery of LUMS has been geared towards planning the convocation ceremony for the Batch of 2017 with the interests and concerns of the students as the LOWEST priority.
The student body at LUMS is an active, dynamic and passionate body. A convocation holds a special place in the life of a student and his family. It has been a day we all have been working towards and therefore we wish to capture it and enjoy it to the fullest. LUMS has always had a tradition of granting its students a great amount of freedoms and that has been what makes LUMS the university it is today. But the policies by the LUMS administration in regards to the Convocation 2017 have been sad for us as students to see. The Graduating Batch of 2017 is in agreement on these following points and we require their immediate rectification from the administration:
1. The security verification of our guests has not only been insulting but the measures being implemented are excessive: LUMS has always had a tradition of keeping the campus open for all of the students and their guests for purposes of photography etc. We demand the LUMS administration to open the campus with all of its facilities (especially restaurants and shops as the high heat in Lahore during the afternoon requires adequate spaces for food and drinks for our parents and families) during the convocation ceremony while make adequate arrangements for those seated in SBASSE watching the ceremony online and ensuring students and their guests have the ability to enjoy the campus grounds unfettered throughout the duration of the convocation ceremony (7am-2pm). We also demand that students be greatly facilitated by the LUMS administration when changing their guests due to reasonable considerations: the case of a particular Mr. Ali Haider (Member of the Graduating Batch) has greatly disturbed us.
2. The ban of mobile phones and cameras in the marque is simply not acceptable. The Graduating Batch is unanimously in agreement that given our hard years studying at LUMS and our families and friends supporting us, we cannot and will not accept any arrangement that compromises our or our parent’s ability to capture this momentous occasion as per our individual wishes: frankly sir, this moment is too big for us to rely on the inadequate photography arrangements made by LUMS, they are not enough and they never can be so remove the ban on personal mobile phones and cameras.
3. The ban on mobile phones is also not acceptable for us due to communication purposes. The convocation ceremony requires us to be in constant communication with our peers and guests at all time. In no vague terms sir, we demand that mobile signals are not jammed and our mobile phones be made available in the marque so we can smoothly enjoy this momentous event to its fullest, rather than spend it stressing as we cannot find our friends or family.
4. The time slots allotted for collection of Alumni Cards till Thursday 6th July 2017 for all graduating students is a perfect example of the mismanagement of this administration in planning the convocation. The ad-hoc timing that has been granted for collection of Alumni cards for ‘exceptional cases’ on Friday 7th July 2017 by this administration as an afterthought is a true sign of how much thought the administration is giving to the concerns of the student body when planning this. We demand that all Convocation proceedings be planned in accordance with ease of students, especially those coming from other cities with their families as they have no accommodation at LUMS to arrive earlier.
5. Lastly, we require the LUMS administration to guarantee that the graduating batch and their guests will not be mishandled or inappropriately treated by the President’s security staff. We require LUMS representatives to be manning every gate and to provide welcome and help to the graduating students and their guests. Issues of IBA students (and their parents) being denied entry by the President’s security team in a previous convocation of IBA are known to us and scare us. We want to be assured that issues such as late arrival to the venue or some other minor fault will not compromise a student’s or his/her guest’s enjoyment or attendance of the convocation.
6. The Graduating Batch of 2017 also feels entitled towards having complete clarity in regards to the proceedings of Convocation of 2017 and the rules being enforced. At the moment there is a great amount of confusion regarding what is and is not allowed by the administration due to contradictory statements from different members of the administration and promises being communicated to the Student Council not being adhered too in the emails being sent. We hope the administration will coordinate and respond to our queries in a collective and consistent manner and a 24/7 helpline to be set up by LUMS for student’s queries because on that day we are not only coming ourselves but bringing our guests along and require complete clarity to make plans etc.
As our administration, we believe that our voice should be heard and acted upon by you. With great respect and deference, we as students of LUMS trust you as our administration to make the right calls and keep our interests at the foremost. However, if you fail to hear our voice now, we will be forced to make our dissatisfaction heard through other means. We do not wish to ruin this amazing day that is almost upon us. We want to enjoy this moment we have worked so hard for, please don’t take it away from us.
We the undersigned,
LUMS Graduating Batch of 2017