As the editor of Plymouth Universityís student union paper, the Knowledge, Katie French felt she had a duty to hold her university to account. But four weeks before the deadline for her final-year dissertation she was threatened with expulsion when she printed a story that made Plymouth look bad.
The offending article, published last year, uncovered planned cuts of £260,000 to student services at the institution, including disability support. French says that the studentsí union bombarded her with angry calls, texts and emails demanding that she remove it from the website. In one email, seen by the Guardian, a vice-president of the union warned: 'Some things are sensitive for business reasons. Stage 3 dismissal from university or suspension.'
She recalls: 'I panicked and burst into tears. I felt very isolated but at the same time I knew we were doing the right thing. At the end of the day I was just trying to report on things that students have the right to know about.' Continue>>>