Tutors have responded to increasing pressure to show compassion within the intermission process by sending students home using a twenty tonne medieval trebuchet.
Cameron Bridgeworth, a senior tutor who spearheaded the initiative said: “This is a huge step forward. Many students who intermit just want to get out as soon as they can and not linger within a 1.5km radius of the university.”
“In our eyes an intermitting student is essentially a lifeless grey rock anyway – both would get a third in the Tripos exams and have no real purpose other than besieging French towns. Of course some mental health experts and human rights lawyers will have their issues and call the trebuchet ‘barbaric’ or ‘a crime against humanity’ but there are always going to be critics and we still believe that this a real sign of progress and reform.”
The university have gone to painstaking lengths to tailor the intermission process to suit each person’s needs. For example, students will be allowed to choose from a range of ‘scenic locations’ to be propelled into. Popular destinations include ‘barbed wire field’, ‘nuclear waste deposit’, ‘raw sewage plant’ and ‘Churchill College’. Ex-students can also pick a song to be played as they are catapulted, such as ‘Another One Bites the Dust’ by Queen and ‘Straight Outta Cambridge’ by PWA (Proctors With Attitude). In order to further calm the nerves of those who intermit, a crowd of their friends and supervisors will be assembled next to the trebuchet and will alleviate the severity of the situation by laughing.
The trebuchet is just one component of a wide-ranging plan by the university to improve the intermission process. Upon returning home, students will no longer need to feel anxious about disclosing their decision; they will be required to sign up to an ‘intermission offenders registry’ and a red dot will be placed above their house on Google maps. New measures will also shield potential Oxbridge applicants from the scare of intermission by forcing former students stay 100m away from local schools at all times.
One anonymous Director of Studies lauded the new system and said: “The University has encouraged me to maintain close ties with my students who have intermitted. Every month I’ll phone them to see how things are going and use supportive language such as ‘you’re an idiot’ or ‘I feel ashamed to have taught you’. It really raises the morale! So that my students enjoy a relaxing break away from Cambridge, I also made sure they were fitted with ankle-tags that will administer a soothing 1000 volt electronic shock if they try to return to the university without permission.”
Cambridge will ensure a smooth transition back into university life for students who are granted permission to return by making them wear a conical hat with the word ‘Dunce’ written on it so that people are aware of the hardships they have been through. At the same time, proctors will follow returning students around with a bell screaming ‘Hear ye, hear ye! You are a lazy gimp!’