Today's Top Ten

December 4, 2020

Montreal Tech allegedly not offering full complement of courses, students unable to graduate

CBC reports that Montreal Tech College is still not offering its full complement of courses after suspending classes in March. Montreal Tech students say that they have been unable to finish classes that would allow them to graduate, despite the college saying it would resume classes in September. When the college resumed, only a limited number of courses were offered online and these did not start until November. College owner David-Simon Boisvert stated that 10 out of 14 courses have resumed, and that the college is preparing to start the new semester in January. Boisvert added that the college may need to push the start date back to February to allow international students time to quarantine. CBC says that the Ministry of Higher Education is aware of the complaints. CBC (QC)

Cégep de Trois-Rivières receives $1.35M for 3D printer

Cégep de Trois-Rivières will receive $1.35M from the Government of Canada and Government of Québec for the acquisition of a 3D printer for the Centre de métallurgie du Québec (CMQ). The centre will use the printer to create sand moulds that will allow for the increased production of high-performance metal components used in prototyping and short series production. “This new infrastructure will make innovation accessible to an entire industry, including several businesses that would not have been able to take the risk and would not have had the financial means to benefit from these technological advancements,” said CMQ Director General Gheorghe Marin. Canada (QC)

Instructors introduce VR to the classroom to make digital learning more engaging

Instructors have continued to use technology in new ways to further enhance their virtual classrooms. At Simon Fraser University, instructors Steve DiPaola and Jeremy Turner have used Tivoli Cloud VR to enable students and instructors to set up avatars and enter into a virtual classroom. Users can navigate the classroom, talk to other users, display slides and videos, and more. At the University of St Michael’s College, students in Paolo Granata’s creativity and technology seminar will use VR headsets to flip through course material and "learn how to fly." “The virtual world does not mean a fake world. Students will be able to experiment creatively with the impossible,” said Granata. “VR provides us with a tangible way to get in touch with the intangible. This is something different.”

(BC | ON) SFU | St Mike’s

UoGuelph to offer Bachelor of Indigenous Environmental Science and Practice

The University of Guelph's Ontario Agricultural College is launching a new environmental science program called the Bachelor of Indigenous Environmental Science and Practice (BIESP), inspired by the Chippewas of Nawash Unceded First Nation. The program will bring together Indigenous and non-Indigenous approaches to environmental protection. Students will work directly with Indigenous communities and organizations and will participate in land-based instruction. “The BIESP program responds to the need to have scientists that can work ethically and meaningfully with Indigenous peoples and within multiple knowledge systems,” said Cara Wehkamp, special adviser to UoGuelph president Charlotte Yates on Indigenous initiatives. UoGuelph says this is the first degree program of its kind in Canada. UoGuelph (ON)

Holland College, UPEI sign degree pathway agreements

Holland College and the University of Prince Edward Island have signed 23 degree pathway agreements. These pathways – both new and renewed – cover a wide array of academic areas and will provide multiple opportunities for graduates of Holland College to pursue a degree at UPEI. “The renewal and establishment of new pathways will allow more students to start or finish their studies with practical, hands-on training at Holland College while gaining a deeper knowledge of their field at the university level,” said Holland College VP Academic and Applied Research Natalie Mitton. UPEI Interim Vice-President Academic and Research Kathy Gottschall-Pass added that “there is no one pathway to a post-secondary education. We are pleased to partner with Holland College on agreements such as these that provide students with additional, unique learning experiences with limitless career options.” Holland (PE)

Reforms could improve career outlook for PhD students: Opinion

Higher education is in need of major reforms that will improve the career outlook for PhD students, writes Katina L Rogers. The article discusses ten major reforms that higher education needs and includes advice for instructors and graduate students. The author explains how instructors should encourage students to explore careers at the beginning of graduate school to help them understand their interests. Additionally, the article describes how instructors can encourage students to expand their definition of meaningful scholarship, build partnerships outside the university, and seek outside resources to prepare for graduation. “However you choose to get involved, and even if change is hard to see, know that your voice matters every step of the way. The time for change is now,” writes Rogers. Chronicle of Higher Ed (International)

Loyalist ARC, Bioenterprise sign MOU to support agri-tech sector, SMEs

Loyalist College has signed a MOU with Bioenterprise that facilitates collaboration between academia and industry. The partnership will see Loyalist’s Applied Research Centre for Natural Products and Medical Cannabis (ARC) and Bioenterprise support small- to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and drive economic growth in the food, beverage, cannabis, and related industries. “The ARC is an innovation hub for natural products and medical cannabis, and a leader in analytical testing,” said Ann Marie Vaughan, Loyalist President. “In partnering with Bioenterprise, we will be assisting the needs of our country’s agri-tech sector and helping SMEs launch new quality products to remain competitive in a global market.” Bioenterprise | InQuinte (ON)

HEC partners with SKEMA to offer dual Master’s degree

HEC Montréal has announced a new dual Master’s degree with the France-based SKEMA Business School. Beginning Fall 2021, students will be able to earn two degrees over the course of three years: The Master en Management, Expertise Comptable et Audit (ECA) from SKEMA and the maîtrise en gestion (MSc) – comptabilité-contrôle-audit degree from HEC. Through the agreement, students will pay their home institution’s tuition with no extra fees. HEC Montréal (QC)

Michener announces new programs in Digital Health, Data Analytics

The Michener Institute of Education at UHN has announced the creation of new programs in artificial intelligence to help meet the need for digitally-literate health professionals. The Digital Health and Data Analytics Programs will include one new full-time program within the School of Applied Health Sciences (AHS), new curriculum in some existing AHS programs, and expanded professional development programming offered through the School of Continuing Education. “We expect that graduates of these programs will become leaders and pioneers in the effective integration of digital- and data-driven processes on the frontlines of care,” said Michener AHS Principal Harvey Weingarten. Michener (ON)

UCN, ACC to offer Health Care Aide Assistant program

University College of the North and Assiniboine Community College will be offering a Health Care Aide Assistant program to help meet community long-term care home staffing needs throughout Manitoba. "This offering demonstrates the value that UCN provides to northern Manitobans,” said UCN President Doug Lauvstad. “These new graduates will provide the essential care needed in our long‐term care homes, in a time when COVID is ravaging our most vulnerable.” Red River College began offering the program earlier this fall and has shared the curriculum with the other institutions. UCN (MB)