Because of more overseas competition and a drop in birth rates during the 90s, Chinese universities have become a little feistier in persuading students to apply. It comes as no surprise then that a fiery rivalry is brewing between two of Shanghai’s biggest colleges over student enrollment.
This antagonism intensified Friday when Fudan issued a statement announcing that Jiaotong University had “duped” students out of applying to Fudan. While Jiaotong University wasn’t explicitly mentioned, it was nonetheless greatly insinuated that Fudan’s Shanghai competitor was to blame.
Fudan stated on their website as well as official microblog that a teacher from “one of Shanghai’s universities” had been calling up potential students and informing them of their failure to be accepted into Fudan. Afterwards they sought to persuade these students into applying to Jiaotong University.
“It’s fraudulent,” Fudan said on its official microblog. “We reserve the right to sue the engineering college in southwest Shanghai.”
STJU shot back over the weekend denying the accusations as well as making their own.
“We are very regretful that some other university teachers have been sullying SJTU’s image in recruitment fairs in high schools,”
Seemingly in the mood to point fingers, Fudan decided to extend this war of words up to Hubei province where Director of Admissions Feng Wei accused Peking and Tsinghua University of embarking on a campaign of “dirty tricks” to dissuade out-of-province students from applying to Fudan.
Yang Lei, a sophomore of Fudan from Hubei Province, supported Feng’s claim. He said school officials and local government officials talked to him and his parents, trying to persuade him to revise his application to make Tsinghua or Peking his top choice. Yang said he was offered a bonus to do so.”
Personally, we can’t wait for the impending city/nation wide prank war to commence between these universities. Let the teen movie-like hijinks begin!
By Patrick Keefe