A UNIVERSITY has bizarrely leant its backing to a series of promotional videos of apocalyptic scenes featuring guns and extreme-violence.
The University of Lincoln has given its support to one of their students’ collection of violent adverts promoting the educational institution using a burning lecture theatre and a zombie-apocalypse on campus.
Student Tom Ridgewell made the selection of promos featuring the graphic scenes including dinosaurs, fire and the undead roaming around the university.
But despite the violent themes running through the clips – they have received the full backing of the university after he received viral success.
Tom transformed the usual bland and boring university TV adverts which encourage undergraduates to enrol, into exciting and energetic scenes which could be lifted from a low-budget horror film.
The bizarre clips – which have become an online hit – have even encouraged students to the institution.
The university first spotted them when they popped up on Google alerts but did not know who had produced them.
Communications manager Thirzah Wildman said: “We’ve been watching with fascination as Tom’s adverts have received growing attention from hundreds of thousands of people around the world.
“It’s the sort of viral success that marketers dream of and we’re half wondering whether he’ll do us out of a job.
“The ads are extremely funny and creative.
“They’re the talk of the higher education recruitment fairs at the moment, with prospective students seeking us out because they’ve seen the adverts.
“We’re quick to reassure people there aren’t any zombies at Lincoln.”
Media Production student Tom, 20, he came up with the idea for the alternative adverts in the classic student way, his mind wandered during a lecture.
He said: “I was distracted during a lecture, thinking about what would happen if I appeared on TV advertising my university.
“So instead of being a big ol’ narcissist and suggesting that they put me into an ad, I just sketched a few then and there. I honestly couldn’t tell you what the lecture was about.”
Tom, who graduates in May, shot the ads in his own time around his course.
And they are certainly are a step up from the usual bland and boring university TV adverts
He uploaded ‘Final Banned University of Lincoln to YouTube, where it has already had quite a following with 385,189 hits.
“The public response has been fantastic,” he added. “The amount of people claiming that Lincoln is now their number one choice just makes me want to lead a conga line through the university’s marketing department,”
Tom has been making videos since he was 16 and worked on 100 during his degree course.
He says he is not running short of ideas and post graduation plans to move to London and keep filming.
David Sleight, Dean of the Faculty of Media, Humanities and Technology at the University, added: “Tom is a true creative talent: his take on the world is always witty, often humorous and sometimes completely irreverent.
“His following on the internet is astonishing in scale: he’s had something over 90 million hits for his work in just over four years – clearly he has found a major audience.
“I produced the University of Lincoln’s official TV adverts, so Tom is spoofing his own professor’s work – some might think that a risky strategy to adopt.
“But I work on the basis that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.
“So long as he stays within bounds of public taste and decency he’s doing exactly what he needs to impress the media and creative industries, and I have no doubt he will secure future opportunities by being recognised for his work.”
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